The Mind of the Novel: Reflexive Fiction and the Ineffable

Scholarly Series
Bruce F. Kawin

From Moby-Dick to The Unnamable, from A Tale of a Tub to The Book of Questions, Bruce Kawin explores the nature of self-conscious fiction and compares its structure to that of human consciousness. Focusing on texts that confront their own limits by trying to name the unnamable, the ineffable self, Kawin draws on methods from literary criticism to systems theory to explain a variety of first-person works that “dance around the ungraspable subject.”

Many first-person texts—including those of Melville, Stein, Proust, Faulkner, Lessing, and Beckett—involve a hierarchy of narrators or a system of displaced viewpoints, underneath which may lie one ideal voice: a mind of the novel. Contemporary fiction, he shows, is not a literature of exhaustion but a confrontation by the author, text, and reader of the limits of awareness.

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Publication: Scholarly Series
Format: Paperback / softback
Number of pages: 375
ISBN-13: 9781564784629
GTIN13: 9781564784629
Publication date: 10/1/2006
Language: eng
List price: $29.95