Download The Oxford History of the Novel in English: Volume 6: The by Priscilla Wald, Michael A. Elliott PDF

By Priscilla Wald, Michael A. Elliott

Witnessing the tip of a warfare that almost terminated the country, the abolition of racial slavery and upward thrust of criminal segregation, the increase of Modernism and Hollywood, the final of the frontier and global Wars, the literary old interval represented during this quantity constitutes the crucible of yankee literary historical past. the following, 35 essays by means of best researchers within the box aspect how issues of race and citizenship; immigration and assimilation; gender and sexuality; nationalism and empire; all reverberate all through novels written within the usa among 1870 and 1940. individuals speak about the professionalization of literary creation after the Civil battle along felony and political debates over segregation and citizenship; whereas chapters on journalism, geography, faith, and immigration supply discussions on every thing from the lasting function of literary realism in American fiction to the Spanish-American War's impression on constructing theories of aesthetics and pop culture. the amount deals thorough assurance of the emergence of serial fiction, kid's fiction, crime and detective fiction, technology fiction, or even cinema and comics, as new media and inventive revolutions just like the Harlem Renaissance helped herald the recent foreign aesthetic circulation of Modernism. the ultimate chapters within the quantity discover the connection of the unconventional to the emergence of "American literature" as a class within the academy, in public feedback and journalism, and in mass tradition.

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Accordingly, a book of poetry could garner big sales, its author becoming widely known. Edgar Lee Masters’s Spoon River Anthology (1915) was a bestseller over several years in the 1910s, and Edna St. Vincent Millay’s Fatal Interview sonnets (1931) achieved a similar feat in the 1930s. But no literary form produced more celebrity figures during these decades than the novel. The novel was the dominant genre of the era—similar to memoir today. Indeed, narrative fiction was a major focus of such cultural sponsors as the Literary Guild (founded in 1927) and even of the more eclectic Book-of-the-Month Club (launched in 1926), which, Janice Radway reports, may have avoided literary modernism, but still aimed to promote “serious fiction” tied to “issues of everyday life” in its early years (1997, 278–79).

Third, they worked to control the prices at which literature could sell, in an attempt to ensure that a greater number of works could make a profit for publishers, authors, and booksellers. Fourth, and connected to all three of the above, they experimented with new ways to increase distribution through marketing schemes like book clubs and advertising, which helped publishers create a range of different canons. All of these activities allowed publishers to protect their investment in authors so that they could rely on their backlist to keep their firms profitable.

Accordingly, a book of poetry could garner big sales, its author becoming widely known. Edgar Lee Masters’s Spoon River Anthology (1915) was a bestseller over several years in the 1910s, and Edna St. Vincent Millay’s Fatal Interview sonnets (1931) achieved a similar feat in the 1930s. But no literary form produced more celebrity figures during these decades than the novel. The novel was the dominant genre of the era—similar to memoir today. Indeed, narrative fiction was a major focus of such cultural sponsors as the Literary Guild (founded in 1927) and even of the more eclectic Book-of-the-Month Club (launched in 1926), which, Janice Radway reports, may have avoided literary modernism, but still aimed to promote “serious fiction” tied to “issues of everyday life” in its early years (1997, 278–79).

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