Memory and Narrative: The Weave of Life-Writing

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University of Chicago Press, 1998 - Literary Criticism - 430 pages
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Memory and Narrative presents an elegant, authoritative account of how life-writing has changed over time to arrive at its present form. James Olney, one of the most distinguished scholars of autobiography, tells the story of an evolving literary form that originated in the autobiographical writings of St. Augustine, underwent profound changes in Jean-Jacques Rousseau's life-writing trilogy, and found a momentary conclusion in the work of Samuel Beckett.

"This is an elegant work of scholarship." —Jason Berry, Chicago Tribune

"Examines how the fascinating, reciprocal relationship between memory and narrative has evolved over the course of 17 centuries. . . . Olney's work is a valuable companion to his subjects' primary texts." —Booklist
 

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Contents

Memory and the Narrative Imperative
1
FIRST INTERLUDE
85
JeanJacques Rousseau and the Crisis of Narrative
101
Nor
229
Narrative
271
Memory
339
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About the author (1998)

James Olney is the Voorhies Professor of English and professor of French and Italian at Louisiana State University. He is author, editor, or coeditor of eleven books, most recently The Language(s) of Poetry: Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Gerard Manley Hopkins. He is also coeditor of The Southern Review.

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