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What is 'English' about the English novel, and how has the idea of the English nation been shaped by the writers of fiction? How do the novel's profound differences from poetry and drama affect its representation of national consciousness? Nation and Novel sets out to answer these questions by tracing English prose fiction from its late medieval origins through its stories of rogues and criminals, family rebellions and suffering heroines, to the present-day novels of immigration. Major novelists from Daniel Defoe to the late twentieth century have drawn on national history and mythology in novels which have pitted Cavalier against Puritan, Tory against Whig, region against nation, and domesticity against empire. The novel is deeply concerned with the fate of the nation, but almost always at variance with official and ruling-class perspectives on English society. Patrick Parrinder's groundbreaking new literary history outlines the English novel's distinctive, sometimes paradoxical, and often subversive view of national character and identity. This sophisticated yet accessible assessment of the relationship between fiction and nation will set the agenda for future research and debate.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780199264858
ISBN-10: 0199264856
Format: Paperback
(235mm x 157mm x 27mm)
Pages: 512
Imprint: Oxford University Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publish Date: 18-Sep-2008
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Patrick Parrinder

Born in Cornwall, Patrick Parrinder grew up in London and south-east England and went on to read English at Cambridge University, where he became a Fellow of King's College. He moved to the University of Reading in 1974, and has been a professor there since 1986. He has been a visiting professor in the United States (University of Illinois, 1978-9; University of California, Santa Barbara, 1989) and Canada (McGill University, 1979). Work on Nation and Novel was aided by a Leverhulme Major Research fellowship (2001-4). He has been a contributor to the London Review of Books and many other journals.

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