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"Reverse Tradition" invites the reader of postmodern fiction to travel back to the nineteenth-century novel without pretending to let go of contemporary anxieties and expectations. What happens to the reader of Beckett when he or she returns to Melville? Or to the enthusiast of Toni Morrison who rereads Charlotte Bronte? While Robert Kiely does not claim that all fictions begin to look alike, he finds unexpected and illuminating pleasures in examining a variety of ways in which new texts reflect on old. In this book, Kiely not only juxtaposes familiar authors in unfamiliar ways; he proposes a countertradition of intertextuality and a way to release the genie of postmodernism from the bottleneck of the late twentieth century. Placing the reader's response at the crux, he offers new readings by pairing, among others, Jorge Luis Borges with Mark Twain, and Maxine Hong Kingston with George Eliot. In the process, he tests and challenges common assumptions about transparency in nineteenth century realism and ahistorical opacity in early and late postmodemism.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780674767034
ISBN-10: 0674767039
Format: Hardback
(235mm x 155mm x 29mm)
Pages: 314
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 3-Sep-1993
Country of Publication: United States

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