The Comic Turn in Contemporary English Fiction

Who's Laughing Now?
Bloomsbury Academic (Verlag)
  • erschienen am 9. Juli 2020
  • |
  • 256 Seiten
E-Book | PDF mit Adobe-DRM | Systemvoraussetzungen
978-1-4742-9305-1 (ISBN)
The Comic Turn in Contemporary English Fiction explores the importance of comedy in contemporary literature and culture. In an era largely defined by a mood of crisis, bleakness, cruelty, melancholia, environmental catastrophe and collapse, Huw Marsh argues that contemporary fiction is as likely to treat these subjects comically as it is to treat them gravely, and that the recognition and proper analysis of this humour opens up new ways to think about literature. Structured around readings of authors including Martin Amis, Nicola Barker, Julian Barnes, Jonathan Coe, Howard Jacobson, Magnus Mills and Zadie Smith, this book suggests not only that much of the most interesting contemporary writing is funny and that there is a comic tendency in contemporary fiction, but also that this humour, this comic licence, allows writers of contemporary fiction to do peculiar and interesting things - things that are funny in the sense of odd or strange and that may in turn inspire a funny turn in readers. Marsh offers a series of original critical and theoretical frameworks for discussing questions of literary genre, style, affect and politics, demonstrating that comedy is an often neglected mode that plays a generative role in much of the most interesting contemporary writing, creating sites of rich political, stylistic, cognitive and ethical contestation whose analysis offers a new perspective on the present.
  • Englisch
  • London
  • |
  • Großbritannien
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Für Beruf und Forschung
  • 4,92 MB
978-1-4742-9305-1 (9781474293051)
weitere Ausgaben werden ermittelt
Huw Marsh is Lecturer in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature at Queen Mary University of London, UK. He is the author of Beryl Bainbridge (2014) and works mainly on post-war and contemporary fiction.
Introduction: A comic turn in contemporary English fiction?
The comic turn
Contemporary English fiction
Who's laughing now?
1. 'Sinking giggling into the sea'?: Jonathan Coe and the politics of comedy
Jokes and/as innovative action
From satire to comedy
2. 'A grave disquisition': Style, class and comedy in the novels of Martin Amis
The ethics of style
High and low: Hierarchies of comic style
Comedy, class and style from The Information to Lionel Asbo
3. 'Talking about things we didn't want to talk about': Zadie Smith and laughter
What's so hysterical about hysterical realism?
Mixed emotions: Laughter and tears
'Talking about things we didn't want to talk about': Comedy and community
4. 'Like a monkey with a miniature cymbal': Magnus Mills and the comedy of repetition
Comedy, surprise and repetition
Magnus Mills
Deadpan; dead bodies: The Restraint of Beasts
Working to rule, ruling the workplace: The Scheme for Full Employment and The Maintenance of Headway
Funny as hell: Beckett, O'Brien, Mills
5. 'Simple high jinks'?: Nicola Barker and the comedy of paradox
Pooterism, pedantry and the logic of the absurd: Incongruity as comic practice
'Is the fucking carnival in town or what?': Satire, the grotesque and the carnivalesque
Laughter and redemption: From comedy to humour
6. 'No drawing of lines': Howard Jacobson and the boundaries of the comic
Lancing the boil: Zoo Time, Coming from Behind and the necessity of offence
'Jew know why'?: The Finkler Question, Jewish Jokes and the politics of joke-telling communities
'Not only funny': Kalooki Nights and Holocaust comedy
Comedy Trumped? Pussy and the challenge for contemporary satire
Conclusion: The comic turn in contemporary English fiction
Selling the past as the future: Nationhood, work and performance in Julian Barnes's England, England

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