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The Progress of Romance: Literary Historiography and the Gothic Novel

The Progress of Romance: Literary Historiography and the Gothic Novel David Richter, The Progress of Romance: Literary Historiography and the Gothic Novel. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, . xi +  pp. In this book Richter attempts to tell the history of the Gothic novel from , the year of publication of Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto, to the s, notably including the s, when the genre became a major force in English fiction. Richter’s book reflects an acute awareness of the meta-historiographical problems concerning the possibility of writing literary history in general and history of genres in particular. Although for the last two decades the Gothic has drawn much attention in literary criticism (especially feminist criticism and criticism interested in popular fiction), Richter claims that the great majority of critics have avoided any serious attempt to write a literary history (as opposed to a mere ‘‘chronicle’’) of the genre. Richter himself suggests a pluralistic approach to the writing of literary history and employs no fewer than three distinct modes of historiography, New Books at a Glance informed by different theoretical perspectives. ‘‘No mode of historiography has a monopoly on truth, and . . . it is precisely the disparate truths of inconsistent historiographical modes that provide http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Poetics Today: International Journal for Theory and Analysis of Literature and Communication Duke University Press

The Progress of Romance: Literary Historiography and the Gothic Novel

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2001 by Porter Institute for Poetics and Semiotics, Tel Aviv University
ISSN
0333-5372
eISSN
1527-5507
DOI
10.1215/03335372-22-3-704
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

David Richter, The Progress of Romance: Literary Historiography and the Gothic Novel. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, . xi +  pp. In this book Richter attempts to tell the history of the Gothic novel from , the year of publication of Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto, to the s, notably including the s, when the genre became a major force in English fiction. Richter’s book reflects an acute awareness of the meta-historiographical problems concerning the possibility of writing literary history in general and history of genres in particular. Although for the last two decades the Gothic has drawn much attention in literary criticism (especially feminist criticism and criticism interested in popular fiction), Richter claims that the great majority of critics have avoided any serious attempt to write a literary history (as opposed to a mere ‘‘chronicle’’) of the genre. Richter himself suggests a pluralistic approach to the writing of literary history and employs no fewer than three distinct modes of historiography, New Books at a Glance informed by different theoretical perspectives. ‘‘No mode of historiography has a monopoly on truth, and . . . it is precisely the disparate truths of inconsistent historiographical modes that provide

Journal

Poetics Today: International Journal for Theory and Analysis of Literature and CommunicationDuke University Press

Published: Sep 1, 2001

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