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The Cambridge Companion to British Fiction: 1980–2018

Part of Cambridge Companions to Literature

Peter Boxall, Bridget Chalk, Pieter Vermeulen, Leigh Wilson, Gabriele Griffin, Kevin Brazil, Caroline Wintersgill, Martin Eve, Caroline Edwards, Jerome de Groot, Petra Rau, Ben Masters, Stephen Morton, Rebecca Pohl, Patrick Deer
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  • Date Published: June 2019
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108704922


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About the Authors
  • From 1980 to the present, huge transformations have occurred in every area of British cultural life. The election of Margaret Thatcher in 1979 ushered in a new neoliberal era in politics and economics that dramatically reshaped the British landscape. Alongside this political shift, we have seen transformations to the public sphere caused by the arrival of the internet and of social media, and changes in the global balance of power brought about by 9/11, the emergence of China and India as superpowers, and latterly the British vote to leave the European Union. British fiction of the period is intimately interwoven with these historical shifts. This collection brings together some of the most penetrating critics of the contemporary, to explore the role that the British novel has had in shaping the cultural landscape of our time, at a moment, in the wake of the EU referendum of 2016, when the question of what it means to be British has become newly urgent.

    • One of the first comprehensive books on contemporary British fiction to appear in the wake of the Brexit vote
    • Brings together scholars from the US and UK who are producing new theoretical accounts of contemporary culture
    • One of the few books to examine a period that runs from 1980 to 2018
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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108704922
    • length: 332 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.48kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: framing the present Peter Boxall
    Part I. Overview:
    1. The 1980s Bridget Chalk
    2. The 1990s Pieter Vermeulen
    3. Post-millennial literature Leigh Wilson
    Part II. New Formations:
    4. British writing and the limits of the human Gabriele Griffin
    5. Form and fiction, 1980-the present Kevin Brazil
    6. Institutions of fiction Caroline Wintersgill
    Part III. Genres and Movements:
    7. Late modernism, postmodernism, and after Martin Eve
    8. Experiment and the genre novel Caroline Edwards
    9. Transgression and experimentation: the historical novel Jerome de Groot
    10. Film and fiction from 1980-the present Petra Rau
    Part IV. Contexts:
    11. The Mid Atlantics Ben Masters
    12. Fiction, religion and freedom of speech, from 'the Rushdie affair' to 7/7 Stephen Morton
    13. Sexual dissidence and British writing Rebecca Pohl
    14. British cosmopolitanism after 1980 Patrick Deer
    Conclusion: imagining the future Peter Boxall.

  • Editor

    Peter Boxall, University of Sussex
    Peter Boxall is Professor of English Literature at the University of Sussex. He is author of many books on the novel, including Don DeLillo: The Possibility of Fiction (2006), Since Beckett (2009), Twenty-First-Century Fiction (Cambridge, 2013), and The Value of the Novel (Cambridge, 2015). He is editor of the bestselling 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2012) co-editor, with Byran Cheyette, of volume 7 of The Oxford History of the Novel (2016) and with Peter Nicholls of Thinking Poetry (2013). He is also editor, since 2009, of the journal Textual Practice. His most recent book, The Prosthetic Imagination: A History of the Novel as Artificial Life, is forthcoming with Cambridge.


    Peter Boxall, Bridget Chalk, Pieter Vermeulen, Leigh Wilson, Gabriele Griffin, Kevin Brazil, Caroline Wintersgill, Martin Eve, Caroline Edwards, Jerome de Groot, Petra Rau, Ben Masters, Stephen Morton, Rebecca Pohl, Patrick Deer

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