Amnesiac Selves: Nostalgia, Forgetting, and British Fiction, 1810-1870 by Nicholas DamesAmnesiac Selves: Nostalgia, Forgetting, and British Fiction, 1810-1870 by Nicholas Dames

Amnesiac Selves: Nostalgia, Forgetting, and British Fiction, 1810-1870

byNicholas Dames

Hardcover | June 15, 2001

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With Joyce, Proust, and Faulkner in mind, we have come to understand the novel as a form with intimate ties to the impulses and processes of memory. This study contends that this common perception is an anachronism that distorts our view of the novel. Based on an investigation ofrepresentative novels, Amnesiac Selves shows that the Victorian novel bears no such secure relation to memory, and, in fact, it tries to hide, evade, and eliminate remembering. Dames argues that the notable scarcity and distinct unease of representations of remembrance in the nineteenth-centuryBritish novel signal an art form struggling to define and construct new concepts of memory. By placing nineteenth-century British fiction from Jane Austen to Wilkie Collins alongside a wide variety of Victorian psychologies and theories of mind, Nicholas Dames evokes a novelistic world, and aculture, before modern memory--one dedicated to a nostalgic evasion of detailed recollection which our time has largely forgotten.
Nicholas Dames is at Columbia University.
Title:Amnesiac Selves: Nostalgia, Forgetting, and British Fiction, 1810-1870Format:HardcoverPublished:June 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195143574

ISBN - 13:9780195143577

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Editorial Reviews

"Amnesiac Selves is an insightful book, and its insights are important. Nicholas Dames develops in this helpful volume a revisionist view of memory in the early Victorian novel, a view so innovative it not only illuminates our modern perspective of the Victorian mental landscape, it reshapesit.... This careful study deserves reading. Even if you don't agree as enthusiastically as I do with Nicholas Dames' analysis of Victorian views of memory from 1810 through 1870, I will be surprised if those views don't stimulate review of your personal world view. If the way we remember the pastmatters, Amnesiac Selves..., with its meticulously detailed revision of our picture of Victorian memory, bears thinking about."--Steven C. Walker, Studies in the Novel