Auto-poetica : Representations of the Creative Process in Nineteenth-century British and American Fiction

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The nineteenth-century Kunstlerroman self-consciously addresses the devices of fiction-and in doing so, tends toward irony and self-reflection, and prefigures postmodernism. A work of art written about an artist creating a work of art is, in a sense, a novel in which the author is a character. The essays in this collection examine the work of major nineteenth century authors that attempted to merge fiction and reality into a unified whole. These novels paved the way for postmodernists who would use the artist-novel to self-conciously focus on the genre's particular conventions, to parody those conventions in order to accentuate the work's fictionality, and to expose the oppositions between fiction and reality. This collection thus reveals not only material concerns, but the underlying anxieties, drives, and joys, which are so profoundly linked to the creative process.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 264 pages
  • 149.9 x 226.1 x 20.3mm | 430.92g
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739116517
  • 9780739116517

About Darby Lewes

Darby Lewes is Associate Professor of English and Women's Studies at Lycoming College in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
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Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Protagonist: The Nineteenth-century Kunstlerroman in Britain and America Part 2 Selling One's Self: The Artist and the Marketplace Chapter 3 A Writer's Writer: Herman Melville and the Crafting of Pierre Chapter 4 Stocking up Paper Fictions: Making, Selling, and Living the Fictitious in the Self-Portraits of the Victorian Popular Novelist Chapter 5 "Truth-Telling Accents": The Business of Storytelling in Nathaniel Hawthorne's Legends of Province House Chapter 6 Elizabeth Stuart Phelps and the American Sphinx: Commercial Orientalism in The Story of Avis Part 7 Gender and the Kunstlerroman: Oppression and Liberation Chapter 8 "Nobody Ever Guessed How Much It Cost Her": Edna Lyall and the Slow Torture of the Novelist Chapter 9 Wrestling with the Angel in the House, Slaying the Monster in the Attic: The Artist Heroines in Louisa May Alcott's "Psyche's Art" and Little Women Chapter 10 Suffering the Muse: Charlotte Smith's Interior Other Chapter 11 Creativity and Social Power in Jane Austen's Emma Chapter 12 "In Abhorring Mediocrity, Admiring 'Middlingness'": George Eliot and Amateurism Chapter 13 In the (Female) Artist's Studio: Urban Bohemia's Dangerous Spaces Part 14 Art as Religion Chapter 15 "Better than faith or works": The Religion of Art in Henry Jame's "The Altar of the Dead" Chapter 16 The Last Temptation of Dimmesdale: Art and Artistry in The Scarlet Letter Chapter 17 "Twisted Thinkings": Poetry as Therapy in the Work of Arthur Hugh Clough Part 18 The Sibling Arts: Theory, Painting, and Politics Chapter 19 Woven Fictions: Unraveling Pater's Textural Warp Chapter 20 Theories of Creativity and the Saga of Charlotte Bronte Chapter 21 A Picture's Worth a Thousand Lies: Portraits in Victorian Literature Chapter 22 Interior Designs: Representations of the Creative Process in American Protest Literature
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