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J.M. Coetzee and the Novel: Writing and Politics After Beckett (Oxford English Monographs)


J.M. Coetzee and the Novel: Writing and Politics After Beckett (Oxford English Monographs) Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

'Anti-illusionism is, I suspect, only a marking of time, a phase of recuperation, in the history of the novel. The question is, what next?' (J.M. Coetzee)

This book argues that the significance of Coetzee's fiction lies in the acuity with which it both explores and develops the tradition of the novel - ranging from Cervantes, Defoe and Richardson, to Dostoevsky, Kafka and Beckett - as part of a sustained attempt to rethink the relationship between writing and politics. For Coetzee questions about the future of the novel are closely related to what it means to write after Beckett, and J.M. Coetzee and the Novel pays special attention to the ways in which his fiction discerningly assimilates different aspects of literary modernism to address the questions most fundamental to the experience of late twentieth-century politics.

While Coetzee is rightly known as an intensely serious writer, Patrick Hayes shows that the true seriousness of his writing is intimately bound up with comedy - or, to use the word Coetzee borrows from Joyce, the 'jocoserious'. Opening up a range of new approaches to this major contemporary author, J.M. Coetzee and the Novel argues that it is only by paying especially close attention to the experience of reading Coetzee's complex and finely-nuanced fiction that its distinctive and important impact on longstanding questions about identity, community, and the nature of political modernity can be appreciated.

About the Author

Patrick Hayes teaches modern literature from the eighteenth century to the present day at St John's College, Oxford.

Table of Contents


1. Writing and Politics: Contexts and Debates

2. Writing and Politics After Beckett

3. "JOEY RULES": Telling the Truth in Life and Times of Michael K

4. "An author I have not read": Foe, Crime and Punishment, and the Problem of the Novel

5. Genre and Countergenre: Age of Iron, Pamela, and Don Quixote

6. "Redemption" or "Delegitimisation"? the Artist on Trial in The Master of Petersburg

7. "Is this the right image of our nation?" Disgrace and the Seriousness of the Novel

8. Cultural Criticism in the Australian Fiction

Select Bibliography


Product Details

Hayes, Patrick
Oxford University Press, USA
null, Patrick
Literature/English | World Literature | Literary Criticism
Literature-A to Z
Oxford English Monographs
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
5.7 x 8.6 x 1 in 1.075 lb

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » Linguistics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
Humanities » Philosophy » General

J.M. Coetzee and the Novel: Writing and Politics After Beckett (Oxford English Monographs) New Hardcover
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Product details 276 pages Oxford University Press, USA - English 9780199587957 Reviews:
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