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Portraits from Life: Modernist Novelists and Autobiography (Hardback)
  • Portraits from Life: Modernist Novelists and Autobiography (Hardback)
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Portraits from Life: Modernist Novelists and Autobiography (Hardback)

(author)
£20.00
Hardback 304 Pages / Published: 11/01/2018
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What happens when novelists write about their own lives directly, in memoirs and autobiographies, rather than in novels? How do they present themselves, and what do their self-portraits reveal? In a series of biographical case studies, Portraits from Life examines how seven canonical Modernist writers - Joseph Conrad, Ford Madox Ford, Henry James, Wyndham Lewis, Gertrude Stein, H.G. Wells, and Edith Wharton - depicted themselves in their memoirs and autobiographies during the first half of the twentieth century. Drawing on a range of life-writing sources in this innovative group portrait, Jerome Boyd Maunsell reconstructs the periods during which these authors worked on their memoirs, often towards the end of their lives, and shows how memoirs and autobiographies are just as artful as novels. The seven portraits in the book also create a rich network of encounters, as many of these writers knew each other, and wrote about each other in their reminiscences. Portraits from Life investigates the difficulties and possibilities of autobiography - the relation of fact and fiction, biography and autobiography; the ethical issues of dealing with real people; the thin generic lines between novels and autobiographies; and the deceptive workings of memory - and how all these writers dealt with these concerns as they looked back on their lives. An act of portraiture and biography as well as an act of criticism, moving from London to Paris and through two world wars, it also pieces together a fresh and constantly inter-connecting narrative of the Modernist era in England and France.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198789369
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 642 g
Dimensions: 241 x 165 x 24 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Thank heavens then for J. B. Maunsell's new study... which takes Wells seriously as an artist... [the] book is extremely well researched... Maunsell sets out his case with an extensive and deep knowledge of his subjects. Anyone who is interested in the seven writers under discussion is likely to learn something of value from this probing but appreciative examination of their work. * Michael Sherborne, The Wellsian: The Journal of the HG Wells Society *
An overtly compelling read that endeavours to divulge the difficulties and possibilities of autobiography. * David Marx: Book Reviews *
Beautiful, interesting, and attracting. These ones are the words for describing Portraits from Life Modernist, Novelists and Autobiography by Jerome Boyd Mansell... an enchanting book about modern novelists and their personal relationship with biography and auto-biography. * Anna Maria Polidori, Alfemminile *
A unique angle of approach. * Charlotte Jones, Times Higher Education *

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