- Hardcover: 640 pages
- Publisher: Blackwell Pub (June 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0631167587
- ISBN-13: 978-0631167587
- Product Dimensions: 23.3 x 16.3 x 5.2 cm
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 Kg
- See Complete Table of Contents
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"In its breadth, depth, concision and sophistication of analysis, this book is an exceptional achievement. Neglecting neither Francophone nor gender-specific literature, this single-volume history of a thousand years of French writing and culture is a tour de force." Choice
"Covering in varying depth everything down to modern gay, regional, and francophone writing, this approachable and clearly written book can be read front to back or a given strand can be followed through by moving through the headings classifying genres: theatre, poetry, etc." Modern Language Review
"[...] Coward comes into his element, and provides an invaluable synthesis of where French is now and where it is going. A whole raft of mainstream and marginal writing is presented and evaluated, and it is here that those of us who teach French find ourselves pedagogically the most deeply in Coward's debt." The Times Higher Education Supplement
"The concise discussion of structuralism, poststructuralism, postmodernism, and deconstruction will be of use to many students of literature." World Literature Today
Coward takes us beyond 'literature' into the world of the best-seller and, beyond words, to graphic fiction and cinema. In the course of his account he maps the rise of the intellectual, from the time of Dreyfus to the divisions of the 1930s, from the Existentialists to the Post-Structuralists and beyond, and in so doing charts a progression from literary doctrine to critical theory.
Whatever the subject in hand, from the 'feminism' of the Middle Ages to the Feminism of the present, from the 'modernism' of the fifteenth century to the Modernism we associate with Proust and his contemporaries, Coward proves to be a fascinating and inspiring guide. Topics, themes and genres are clearly signposted so that the reader may follow the evolution of theatre, poetry or fiction as well as wider matters such as censorship and writers' rewards. The text is complemented by a fully comprehensive and reader-friendly index.