Download The Language of Fiction: Essays in Criticism and Verbal by David Lodge PDF

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By David Lodge

Language of Fiction used to be the 1st booklet of feedback by means of the popular novelist and critic David hotel. His uniquely expert point of view - he used to be already the writer of 3 profitable novels on the time of its first ebook in 1966 - and lucid exposition intended that the paintings proved a landmark of literary feedback, now not least since it succeeded in speaking a significantly new imaginative and prescient of English literature to a readership that reached well past the boundaries of the academy. Now reissued with a brand new foreword, this significant paintings from the pen of 1 of England's most interesting residing writers is key studying for all those that care concerning the construction and appreciation of literature.

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Additional info for The Language of Fiction: Essays in Criticism and Verbal Analysis of the English Novel (Routledge Classics)

Example text

It reflects the realities of the transition of monopoly capitalism into a more purely consumer stage on what is for the first time a global scale; and it tries to take advantage of the emergence of this new stage of monopoly capitalism to suggest that classical Marxist economics is no longer applicable. According to this argument, a social homogenization is taking place in which the older class differences are disappearing, and which can be described either as the embourgeoisement of the worker, or better still, the transformation of both bourgeois and worker into that new grey organization person known as the consumer.

This fundamental requirement we will call, now borrowing a term from Freud rather than from Marx, the requirement of figurability, the need for social reality and everyday life to have developed to the point at which its underlying class structure becomes representable in tangible form. The point can be made in a different way by underscoring the unexpectedly vital role that culture would be called on to play in such a process, culture not only as an instrument of self-consciousness but even before that as a symptom and a sign of possible self-consciousness in the first place.

In mass culture, repetition effectively volatilizes the original object—the “text,” the “work of art”—so that the student of mass culture has no primary object of study. The most striking demonstration of this process can be witnessed in our reception of contemporary pop music of whatever type—the various kinds of rock, blues, country western, or disco. I will argue that we never hear any of the singles produced in these genres “for the first time”; instead, we live a constant exposure to them in all kinds of different situations, from the steady beat of the car radio through the sounds at lunch, or in the work place, or in shopping centers, all the way to those apparently full-dress performances of the “work” in a nightclub or stadium concert or on the records you buy and take home to hear.

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