The Good Soldier

The Good Soldier

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Originally titled "The Saddest Story" and heralded by Graham Greene as "one of the finest novels of our century," Ford's 1915 tale of passion and deceit in the lives of two married couples is a modernist masterpiece. The Norton Critical Edition of The Good Soldier allows the reader to thoroughly study Ford's great work and unravel its mysteries and meanings. This Second Edition is again based on the meticulously edited first text of the novel and offers detailed annotation, a note on the text, and sections on textual variants and manuscript development along with pertinent illustrations.

"Backgrounds and Contexts" brings together important appraisals of the work directly following its publication. Reactions from Rebecca West and Theodore Dreiser are included among the reviews. The section also collects critiques on literary impressionism, including one by Ford, and related writings by Henry James and by frequent Ford collaborator Joseph Conrad, among others.

"Biographical and Critical Commentary" collects differing assessments of The Good Soldier. Contributions from Richard Aldington, Samuel Hynes, John A. Meixner, Frank Kermode, Carol Jacobs, Thomas C. Moser, Ann Barr Snitow, and Vincent J. Cheng are joined by new selections from Colm Toibin, John G. Peters, Max Saunders, Karen A. Hoffman, and Julian Barnes.

A Selected Bibliography is also included.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 448 pages
  • 129.54 x 210.82 x 25.4mm | 635.03g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised
  • Second Edition
  • 039392792X
  • 9780393927924
  • 802,736

Table of contents

Preface Acknowledgments

The Text of The Good Soldier

Dedicatory Letter to Stella Ford
The Good Soldier


Map of Bad Nauheim, c. 1916
Deutsches Hof today
Hotel Excelsior today
Victorian and Edwardian Bad Nauheim
The Old Kurhaus
The Marburg Schloss
Memorandum of Philip of Hesse, April 1521
Signatures of the Marburg Reformers

Textual Appendices

Cornell manuscript page
A Note on the Text
Manuscript Development and Textual Variants

Contemporary Reviews

The New York Times Book Review [U.S.] (March 7, 1915)
Boston Transcript [U.S.] (March 17, 1915)
Independent [U.S.] (March 22, 1915)
Times Literary Supplement [U.K.] (March 25, 1915)
Observer [U.K.], March 28, 1915)
Rebecca West ? Daily News and Leader [U.K.] (April 2, 1915)
Morning Post [U.K.] (April 5, 1915)
Athaeneum [U.K.] (April 10, 1915)
Outlook [U.K.] (April 17, 1915)
C. E. Lawrence ? Daily Chronicle [U.K.] (April 28, 1915)
Nation [U.S.] (April 29, 1915)
Thomas Seccombe ? New Witness [U.K.] (June 3, 1915)
Theodore Dreiser ? New Republic [U.S.] (June 12,1915)
Saturday Review (Supplement) [U.K.] (June 19, 1915)
Bookman [U.K.] (July 1915)

Literary Impressionism

John G. Peters ? Science and the Epistemological Origins of Literary


Ian Watt ? [Impressionism and Symbolism in Ford, Conrad, and Crane]
John A. Meixner ? [Ford?s Literary Technique]
Joseph Conrad ? Preface to The Nigger of the ?Narcissus? (1897)
Henry James ? [The House of Fiction]
Ford Madox Hueffer [Ford] ? On Impressionism
First Article
Second Article
Ford Madox Ford ? [Developing the Theory of Impressionism with Conrad]

Biographical and Critical Commentary

Richard Aldington ? [Homage to Ford Madox Ford]
Mark Schorer ? [The Good Soldier as Comedy]
Samuel Hynes ? The Epistemology of The Good Soldier
John A. Meixner ? [The Good Soldier as Tragedy]
[Ford, Dowell, and the Sex Instinct]
Grover Smith ? [Dowell as Untrustworthy Narrator]
Frank Kermode ? [Recognition and Deception]
Carol Jacobs ? [The Passion for Talk]
Thomas C. Moser ? [The Narrative Stance of Marlow and Dowell]
Michael Levenson ? Character in The Good Soldier
Ann Barr Snitow ? [The Tragedy of Desire]
Eugene Goodheart ? What Dowell Knew
Vincent J. Cheng ? A Chronology of The Good Soldier
Max Saunders ? [Desiring, Designing, Describing: Sexuality in The Good Soldier]
Karen A. Hoffmann ? ?Am I no better than a eunuch??: Narrating Masculinity and Empire in The
Good Soldier
Colm Toibin ? Outsiders in England and the Art of Being Found Out
Julian Barnes ? The Saddest Story

Selected Bibliography
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About Ford Madox Ford

Ford Madox Ford wrote over 70 books, including several volumes of poetry and novels such as The Good Soldier. Martin Stannard is a professor of modern English literature at the University of Leicester, where he has taught since 1979. He was previously Leverhulme Research Fellow in English Literature at the University of Edinburgh. He is the author of Muriel Spark: The Biography, Evelyn Waugh, The Early Years: 1903-1939 and Evelyn Waugh, The Later Years: 1939-1966, and editor of Evelyn Waugh, The Critical Heritage. His many articles and reviews have appeared in Modern Language Review, Essays in Criticism, the New York Times Book Review, the Times Higher Education Supplement, and Novel, among other publications.
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Rating details

17,902 ratings
3.72 out of 5 stars
5 28% (4,943)
4 34% (6,021)
3 26% (4,631)
2 9% (1,647)
1 4% (660)
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