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  • Preface / Marshall Brown vii

    Literary History

    A Trout in the Milk / Lawrence Lipking 1

    Literary History: Some Roads Not (Yet) Taken / VirgilN Nemoianu 13

    What is the History of Literature? / Jonathan Arac 23

    The Once and Future Middle Ages / R. Howard Bloch 35

    Literature, Meaning, and the Discontinuity of act / Jerome J. McGann 45

    Empiricism Once More / Marjorie Perloff 51

    Some Prospects for Literary History / David Perkins 63

    Literature in History

    Public Memory and its Discontents / Geoffrey H. hartman 73

    Understanding the Living and Talking to the Dead: The Historicity of Psychoanalysis / Meredith Anne Skura 93

    Figures of the Feminine: An Amazonian Revolution in Feminist Literary History? / Donna Landry 107

    Editing as Cultural Formation: The Sexing of Shakespeare's Sonnet / Peter Stallybrass 129

    Textual Politics/Sexual Politics / Richard Dellamora 143

    The Pedigree of the White Stallion: Postcoloniality and Literary History / Rukmini Bhaya Nair 159

    The Victims of New Historicism / Walter Benn Michaels 187

    Literature as History

    Preface to a Lyric History / Susan Stewart 199

    Can We Be Historical Ever? Some Hopes for a Dialectical Model of Historical Self-Consciousness / Charles Altieri 219

    On Literature Considered as a Dead Language / Denis Hollier 233

    More Speech on Free Speech / Annabel Patterson 243

    Textual Conquests: On Readerly Competence and "Minority" Literature / Doris Sommer 255

    The Hum of Literature: Ostension in Language / Paul H. Fry 269

    Contributors 289

    Index 293
  • Marshall Brown

    Lawrence Lipking

    Virgil Nemoianu

    Jonathan Arac

    R. Howard Bloch

    Jerome McGann

    Marjorie Perloff

    David Perkins

    Geoffrey Hartman

    Meredith Anne Skura

    Donna Landry

    Peter Stallybrass

    Richard Dellamora

    Rukmini Bhaya Nair

    Walter Benn Michaels

    Susan Stewart

    Charles Altieri

    Denis Hollier

    Annabel Patterson

    Doris Sommer

    Paul H. Fry

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  • Description

    In this collection, Marshall Brown has gathered essays by twenty leading literary scholars and critics to appraise the current state of literary history. Representing a range of disciplinary specialties and approaches, these essays illustrate and debate the issues that confront scholars working on the literary past and its relation to the present.
    Concerned with both the theory and practice of literary history, these provocative and sometimes combative pieces examine the writing of literary history, the nature of our interest in tradition, and the ways that literary works act in history. Among the numerous issues discussed are the uses of evidence, anachronism, the dialectic of texts and contexts, particularism and the resistance to reductive understanding, the construction of identities, memory, and the endurance of the past. New historicism, nationalism, and gender studies appear in relation to more traditional issues such as textual editing, taste, and literary pedagogy. Combining new and old perspectives, The Uses of Literary History provides a broad view of the field.

    Contributors. Charles Altieri, Jonathan Arac, R. Howard Bloch, Richard Dellamora, Paul H. Fry, Geoffrey Hartman, Denis Hollier, Donna Landry, Lawrence Lipking, Jerome J. McGann, Walter Benn Michaels, Rukmini Bhaya Nair, Virgil Nemoianu, Annabel Patterson, David Perkins, Marjorie Perloff, Meredith Anne Skura, Doris Sommer, Peter Stallybrass, Susan Stewart

    About The Author(s)

    Marshall Brown is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Washington.

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