Visit our Christmas Gift Finder
Click & Collect from 2 Hours*
Free Delivery to UK Shops
Free UK Standard Delivery On all orders £20 and over Free Delivery to UK Shops Local shops and expert booksellers nationwide Free Click & Collect to UK shops From 2 hours of your order*
The Cult of the Ego: The Self in Modern Literature (Paperback)
  • The Cult of the Ego: The Self in Modern Literature (Paperback)
zoom

The Cult of the Ego: The Self in Modern Literature (Paperback)

(editor)
£37.99
Paperback 244 Pages / Published: 30/04/2005
  • Publisher out of stock

Currently unavailable to order

This product is currently unavailable.

  • This item has been added to your basket
Goethe once remarked that "every emancipation of the spirit is pernicious unless there is a corresponding growth of control." This remark may be taken as a motto for Eugene Goodheart's study of an aspect of the cultural history of the past two hundred years. In separate chapters on Rousseau, Stendhal, Goethe and Carlyle, Dostoevsky, Whitman, Lawrence, and Joyce, Goodheart discovers a community of concern which he calls the cult of the ego. All these writers examined here in one way or another deal with "the emancipation of the spirit" with all its promise and danger. The characteristic attempt is to "extend the boundaries of the self by going beyond the area of safety" and. thereby risking even the destruction of the self. They advance the claims of the self at the same time seeking the controls that will secure these claims. The artist-hero becomes the central figure in Goodheart's volume, since it is he who comes to exemplify the possibilities of the cult of the ego. Their efforts, Goodheart argues, have ambiguous results. The seeds of contemporary nihilism are in the failures of these writers to master the chaos of egoism, which they helped engender. But their heroism was partly in the effort of resistance: moral, religious, aesthetic. In a large portion of modern literature, resistance has been abandoned either out of exhaustion or out of fascination with the destructive tendency of modern life: in Beckett's phrase, "a world endlessly collapsing." In his introduction to this first paperback edition, Goodheart discusses the book's origin in relation to the counter-cultural unrest of 1968 when it was first published and weighs its theme of the emancipated self against current postmodern assertions of the "death of the author." The Cult of the Ego is written with admirable clarity and economy. Its interests are literary, moral and political. Moving freely and knowledgeably among various national literatures, Goodheart has made an original and valuable contribution to the field of comparative literature. Eugene Goodheart is Edytha Macy Gross Professor of Humanities Emeritus at Brandeis University. Among his books are Novel Practices: Classic Modern Fiction, Modernism and the Critical Spirit, Culture and the Radical Conscience, and Confessions of a Secular Jew: A Memoir, all available from Transaction.

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Inc
ISBN: 9781412804813
Number of pages: 244
Weight: 431 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 17 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

"The essays bear witness to the wide scope of Dr. Goodheart's reading, to his wit and facility... One finds a high degree of modernity in astonishing places among leaders of creative thought about the time of the birth of our republic far across the Atlantic. Altogether, a most interesting collection: stimulating and mentally invigorating to the comparatist."

--Herman Salinger, Books Abroad: An International Literary Quarterly

"[O]ne of the best collections of literary criticism I have read for considerable time."

--Robert Kirsch, L.A.Times


"The essays bear witness to the wide scope of Dr. Goodheart's reading, to his wit and facility... One finds a high degree of modernity in astonishing places among leaders of creative thought about the time of the birth of our republic far across the Atlantic. Altogether, a most interesting collection: stimulating and mentally invigorating to the comparatist."

--Herman Salinger, Books Abroad: An International Literary Quarterly

"[O]ne of the best collections of literary criticism I have read for considerable time."

--Robert Kirsch, L.A.Times


-The essays bear witness to the wide scope of Dr. Goodheart's reading, to his wit and facility... One finds a high degree of modernity in astonishing places among leaders of creative thought about the time of the birth of our republic far across the Atlantic. Altogether, a most interesting collection: stimulating and mentally invigorating to the comparatist.-

--Herman Salinger, Books Abroad: An International Literary Quarterly

-[O]ne of the best collections of literary criticism I have read for considerable time.-

--Robert Kirsch, L.A.Times

You may also be interested in...

Macbeth
Added to basket
£8.99
Paperback
Wide Sargasso Sea
Added to basket
£7.99   £5.99
Paperback
Jane Austen
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
Selected Poems
Added to basket
£8.99
Paperback
A Moveable Feast
Added to basket
Nicholas Nickleby
Added to basket
A Lover's Discourse
Added to basket
Collected Poems
Added to basket
£18.99
Paperback
The Mighty Dead
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
The Three Theban Plays
Added to basket
A Little History of Literature
Added to basket
Birthday Letters
Added to basket
£12.99
Paperback
On Writers and Writing
Added to basket
The Iliad
Added to basket
£12.99
Paperback
On Writing
Added to basket
£10.99
Paperback

Please sign in to write a review

Your review has been submitted successfully.