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Description - Portraits in Fiction by A. S. Byatt

Portraits seem the opposite of fiction, fixed in time and space, not running with the curve of a story or a life. Yet, since the birth of the novel, writers have been fascinated by portraits as icons, as motifs, as images of character and evocations of past times. A.S. Byatt delves into the complex relations between portraits and characters, and between portraits and novels as whole works of art. Her authors range from Henry James to Iris Murdoch, her artists from Holbein to Botticelli, Manet to the present day. he looks at the way writers use portraits to conjure up the past, as in Ford Madox Ford's The Fifth Queen and Virginia Woolf's Orlando. She explores their erotic use, the idea of painting as a sexual act, full of danger. And she examines the creation of fictional portrait painters by writers like Balzac and Zola, whose writing was closely linked, in different ways, to the art of Cezanne. portrait can defy the process of age but its very stillness can also seem like death. Art can be a murderer. And sometimes, as in Salman Rushdie's The Moor's Last Sigh, a portrait can itself become the victim of Gothic rage.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780099429845
ISBN-10: 0099429845
Format: Paperback
(199mm x 132mm x 10mm)
Pages: 112
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 7-Nov-2002
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - A. S. Byatt

A. S. Byatt is acclaimed internationally for her fiction and also for her criticism in the firelds of both literature and art. She is married, and lives in London.

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