Writing and Orality: Nationality, Culture, and Nineteenth-Century Scottish Fiction by Penny Fielding

Writing and Orality: Nationality, Culture, and Nineteenth-Century Scottish Fiction

byPenny Fielding

Hardcover | November 1, 1992

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This book explores the concepts of nationality and culture in the context of nineteenth-century Scottish fiction, through the writing of Walter Scott, James Hogg, R. L. Stevenson, and Margaret Oliphant. It describes the relationship between speech writing as a foundation of the literaryconstruction of a particular national identity, exploring how orality and literacy are figured in nineteenth-century preoccupations with the definition of `culture'. It further examines the importance of romance revival in the ascendancy of the novel and the development of that genre across acentury which saw the novel stripped of its female associations and accorded a masculine authority, touching on the sexualization of language in the discourse between women's narrative (oral) and men's narrative (written). The books importance for literary studies lies in the investigation of some of the consequences of deconstruction. It explores how the speech/writing opposition is open to the influence of social and material forces. Focusing on the writing of Scott, Hogg, Stevenson, and Oliphant, it looks atthe conflicts in narratological experiments in Scottish writing, constructions of class and gender, the effects of popular literacy and the material condition of books as artefacts and commodities. This book is the first to offer a broad picture of the interaction of Scottish fiction and moderntheoretical thinking, taking its roots from a combination of deconstruction, narrative theory, the history of orality, linguistics and psychoanalysis.

About The Author

Penny Fielding is at Edinburgh University.
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Details & Specs

Title:Writing and Orality: Nationality, Culture, and Nineteenth-Century Scottish FictionFormat:HardcoverDimensions:264 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.79 inPublished:November 1, 1992Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198121806

ISBN - 13:9780198121800

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Writing and Orality explores the concepts of nationality and culture in nineteenth-century Scottish fiction, through the writing of Walter Scott, James Hogg, R.L. Stevenson, and Margaret Oliphant. It describes the relationship between speech and writing as a foundation for the literary construction of national and class identity, exploring how orality and literacy are figured in nineteenth-century preoccupations with the definition of 'culture'. The book further examines the persistence of the romance mode in the ascendancy of the novel and the relevance of speech and writing in the gendering of narrative forms, including the association of the oral with the unconscious at the end of the nineteenth century. Fielding offers a new model, following deconstruction, of the speech/writing opposition, in which it is subject to the varying influences of social and material forces. Writing and Orality looks at narrative experiments in Scottish writing as they are effected by constructions of class and gender, popular literacy, and the condition of books as artifacts and co

Editorial Reviews

`This is a highly accomplished study ... Her wide-ranging chapters surveying the currents of orality and literature in the nineteenth century contain some of the best material in the book, though they are surpassed by the analyses of Oliphant's short stories. Fielding deserves particularcredit for her theoretically aware appreciation of Oliphant's important late work ... This is Fielding's first book and an impressive debut. Few critics have written so well about the authorial power of Stevenson and Oliphant, and no one has written so well about speech and textuality in their work.I hope Fielding's next book will be even more ambitious in scope, and that it will come soon.'Robert Crawford, University of St Andrews, Modern Philology