Sensational Designs: The Cultural Work of American Fiction, 1790-1860 / Edition 1

Sensational Designs: The Cultural Work of American Fiction, 1790-1860 / Edition 1

by Jane P. Tompkins, Tompkins
ISBN-10:
0195041194
ISBN-13:
9780195041194
Pub. Date:
06/28/1989
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
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Overview

Sensational Designs: The Cultural Work of American Fiction, 1790-1860 / Edition 1

What makes a literary classic? In "Sensational Designs" Jane Tompkins argues that it is not the intrinsic merit of a text, but rather the circumstances of its writing. Against the modernist belief that art, in order to be art, must be free from propaganda, Tompkins contends that writers like Brockden Brown, Cooper, Stowe, and Warner wrote in order to alter the face of the social world, not to elicit aesthetic appreciation.Thus, the value and significance of the novels, for readers of their time, depended on precisely those characteristics that formalist criticism has taught us to deplore: stereotyped characters, sensational plots, and cliched language.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780195041194
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date: 06/28/1989
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 8.25(w) x 5.50(h) x 0.75(d)

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