Joseph Conrad's Polish background, his extensive travels and his detached view of his adopted country, Britain, gave him a perspective unique among English writers of the twentieth century. Combining Continental and British influences, Victorian and Modernist styles, he was an artist acutely responsive to his age, whose works reflect and chronicle its shaping forces. This volume examines the biographical, historical, cultural and political contexts that fashioned his works. Written by a specialist, each short chapter covers a specific theme in relation to Conrad's life and work: letters, Modernism, the sea, the Polish and French languages, the First World War, and many other topics. This book will appeal to scholars as well as to those beginning their study of this extraordinary writer. It shows how this combination of different contexts allowed Conrad to become a key transitional figure in the early emergence of British literary modernism.
• Succinct and lively essays written by specialists in the field • Explains the important themes and contexts of Conrad's work and allows insight into his life and times • Includes illustrations, chronology and further reading suggestions
Chronology Allan H. Simmons; Part I. Life and Works: 1. Life J. H. Stape; 2. Chronology of composition and publication Katherine Isobel Baxter; 3. Language Mary Morzinski and Veronique Pauly; 4. Letters Gene M. Moore; 5. Literary influences Owen Knowles; 6. Biographies and memoirs David Miller; 7. Portraits and illustrations J. H. Stape; Part II. Critical Fortunes: 8. Critical responses: contemporary Allan H. Simmons; 9. Critical responses: 1925–50 Owen Knowles; 10. Critical responses: 1950–75 Richard Niland; 11. Critical responses: 1975–2000 Andrew Purssell; 12. Dramatic and other adaptations Richard Hand; 13. Translations Mario Curreli; Part III. Historical and Cultural Contexts: 14. Africa Allan H. Simmons; 15. Anarchism M. S. Newton; 16. Disease and medicine Martin Bock; 17. Eastern Europe Addison Bross; 18. Far East J. H. Stape; 19. Fin de siècle Laurence Davies; 20. First World War Richard Niland; 21. Intellectual movements Richard Niland; 22. Literary movements Robert G. Hampson; 23. Modernism Michael Levenson; 24. Nationalism and Empire Allan H. Simmons; 25. Politics Allan H. Simmons; 26. Popular culture Stephen Donovan; 27. Publishing Aaron Zacks; 28. Reading Linda Dryden; 29. Religion John Lester; 30. Science and technology Matt Rubery; 31. Sea Robert Foulke; 32. Society Amar Acheraiou; Further reading; Index.
'As soon as Joseph Conrad in Context comes out in paperback, this book should be on reading lists for students. They will learn much from it, and may well be encouraged to read fuller accounts of the topics it covers.' Jeremy Hawthorn, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim