Ideology and Form in Eighteenth-Century Literature

Overview

As millennium approaches, interpreters of eighteenth-century literature have turned to various versions of cultural poetics, which view texts through lenses of class, race, gender and sexual orientation. Meanwhile literature itself has fallen from its lofty pinnacle within the ordering of the arts, and become merely one discursive practice among many. What has been gained and what lost as literary criticism becomes a branch of cultural history?A dozen renowned scholars discuss each other’s work and attempt to ...

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Overview

As millennium approaches, interpreters of eighteenth-century literature have turned to various versions of cultural poetics, which view texts through lenses of class, race, gender and sexual orientation. Meanwhile literature itself has fallen from its lofty pinnacle within the ordering of the arts, and become merely one discursive practice among many. What has been gained and what lost as literary criticism becomes a branch of cultural history?A dozen renowned scholars discuss each other’s work and attempt to come to terms with the central theoretical issues about which the discipline disagrees. Focusing primarily on Henry Fielding, the essays employ and defend positions within feminism, Marxism, Bourdelian analysis, queer theory, and cultural studies, along with a more theoretically savvy version of formalist criticism. In gathering together a dozen extraordinary essays from all regions of the ideological spectrum, this collection aspires to represent for the current decade what the Laura Brown/Felicity Nussbaum anthology The New Eighteenth-Century was for the last decade: a sampler and emblem of where the intellectual currents of our time have taken our profession.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Focuses primarily on the work of Henry Fielding to stake out and defend positions within feminism, Marxism, Bourdelian analysis, queer theory, and cultural studies. In 15 essays, literary scholars comment on each other's views and those elsewhere in the contemporary milieu to form a sampling of the variety of current opinion and practice. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780896724150
  • Publisher: Texas Tech University Press
  • Publication date: 8/15/1999
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,212,259
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Ideology and Form in Henry Fielding
The Closing of Masterpiece Theater: Henry Fielding and the Valorization of Incoherence 3
Ideology and Literary Form: Novels at Work 15
Ideology and Literary Form in Fielding's Tom Jones 31
Tom Jones: The Form in History 47
Making Fielding's Novels Speak for Law and Order 75
Closing Down the Theatre, and Other Critical Abuses 89
Jonathan Wild and True Crime Fiction 105
Form and Ideology in Cultural History
The Question of Ideological Form: Arthur Young, the Agricultural Tour, and Ireland 129
Form as Meaning: Pope and the Ideology of the Couplet 147
The Rules of the Game; Or, Why Neoclassicism Was Never an Ideology 163
Desire and Mourning: The Ideology of the Elegy 185
Inchbald's A Simple Story: An Anti-Ideological Reading 207
The Feminization of Ideology: Form and the Female in the Long Eighteenth Century 223
Rebuttal
The Ends of Ideology: Politics and Literary Response 241
Afterword
Form and Formalists, Ideologies and Ideologues: A Polemical Conclusion 255
Index 269
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