Reading the Times: Temporality and History in Twentieth-Century Fiction

Reading the Times: Temporality and History in Twentieth-Century Fiction

Randall Stevenson
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Author:  Randall Stevenson
Condition:  New
Format:  Paperback
Pages:  272
Publisher:  Edinburgh University Press
Year:  2019
ISBN:  9781474452526

From the Prime Meridian Conference of 1884 to the celebration of the millennium in 2000; from the fiction of Joseph Conrad to the novels of William Gibson and W.G. Sebald, Reading the Times offers fresh insight into modern narrative. It shows how profoundly the structure and themes of the novel depend on attitudes to the clock and to the sense of history's passage, tracing their origins in technologic, economic and social change. It offers a new and powerful way of understanding the relations of history with narrative form, outlining the development and demonstrating - through incisive analyses of a very wide range of literary texts from late nineteenth to early twenty-first century - their key role in shaping fictional narrative throughout this period. The result is a highly innovative literary history of twentieth-century fiction, based on an inventive, enabling method of understanding literature in relation to history - in terms, in every sense, of its reading of its times.