Fictitious Authors and Imaginary Novels in French, English and American Fiction from the 18th to the Start of the 21st Century
Some of the greatest writers of fiction have introduced imaginary novelists as characters in their novels and short stories, sometimes including extended examples or descriptions of the character's work, in a few instances building whole smaller works into the larger structure of their novels. The present study, addressed to the general reader of fiction, is concerned for the first time with collecting and examining these fictional creations by some of the most famous French, English, and American writers, including Balzac, Thackeray, Dickens, Hawthorne, Trollope, James, Proust, Wolfe, Murdock, Updike, Roth, and Byatt, and also introducing readers to striking instances by lesser known writers. Imaginary fiction is often entertaining and readable in itself; in addition it can perform important literary functions for the plot and themes of the work in which it occurs, it provides both imaginary and real author opportunities for literary criticism and social satire, and it can also perform psychological and therapeutic purposes for the writer.
“I welcome the opportunity to write a preface to this work, which I find truly remarkable. It manages at once to be scholarly and entertaining. Let's admit it: most scholarly books are instructive but far from entertaining; in fact, they usually make hard, demanding reading. This work is different in this crucial respect that it is both interesting and pleasurable for the reader …[The] author, George A. Kennedy, has had a most distinguished career as a classicist. He is preeminent above all in the field of rhetoric in which he has for long been acknowledged as the leading, world- renowned scholar … Professor Kennedy explores the importance of imaginary novels and novelists in the diverse works in which they feature … [and] does a real service to today’s readers by directing their attention to a variety of writers central to Western tradition … this informative book’s combination of the highest scholarly standards with the cosmopolitanism of its broad perspective temporally and spatially assures its appeal to a wide readership.” – (from the Foreword) Lilian R. Furst, Marcel Bataillon Professor of Comparative Literature, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and author/ editor of over twenty books.
Table of Contents
Preface by Lilian Furst
ISBN10: 0-7734-6251-1 ISBN13: 978-0-7734-6251-9