Truthful fictions : conversations with American biographical novelists

Format: Print Book 2014
Availability: Available at 1 Library 1 of 1 copy
Available (1)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - Main Library Second Floor - Non-fiction PS374.B56 T78 2014x
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Second Floor - Non-fiction
Call Number  PS374.B56 T78 2014x

In this new collection of interviews, some of America's most prominent novelists identify the key intellectual developments that led to the rise of the contemporary biographical novel, discuss the kind of historical 'truth' this novel communicates, indicate why this narrative form is superior to the traditional historical novel, and reflect on the ideas and characters central to their individual works.

These interviews do more than just define an innovative genre of contemporary fiction. They provide a precise way of understanding the complicated relationship and pregnant tensions between contextualized thinking and historical representation, interdisciplinary studies and 'truth' production, and fictional reality and factual constructions. By focusing on classical and contemporary debates regarding the nature of the historical novel, this volume charts the forces that gave birth to a new incarnation of this genre.

The rise of the American biographical novel / Michael Lackey
Interviews. Fixed facts and creative freedom in the biographical novel / Julia Alvarez
The truth contract in the biographical novel / Russell Banks
Big revolutionary bangs in the biographical novel / Madison Smartt Bell
Building the imaginative record with the biographical novel / M. Allen Cunningham
The biographical novel and the complexity of postmodern interiors / Michael Cunningham
Imagining a matrilineal history in the biographical novel / Anita Diamant
In the fog of the biographical novel's history / Bruce Duffy
Sensualizing and contextualizing historical 'truth' in the biographical novel / Ron Hansen
The art of claiming power in the biographical novel / Sherry Jones
Feminist naming in the biographical novel / Rebecca Kanner
Re-composing a life in the biographical novel / Kate Moses
Enhanced symbolic interiors in the biographical novel / Joyce Carol Oates
The biographical novel's practice of not-knowing / Lance Olsen
Reflections on biographical fiction / Jay Parini
The masking art of the biographical novel / Joanna Scott
Gay interiors and the biographical novel / Edmund White.

Published Reviews
Publisher's Weekly Review: "In this absorbing collection of interviews, University of Minnesota professor Lackey (African American Atheists and Political Liberation) and his accomplished subjects raise complex questions about how history and fiction intersect, and how the novelist blends the two to probe larger emotional and historical truths. In trying to answer why the genre of biographical fiction has grown since the 1980s, Lackey asked 16 writers (including Anita Diamant, Michael Cunningham, Russell Banks, and Joyce Carol Oates) to explain their projects and process. The result is a vibrant discussion about the differences between biographical fiction and history, and the nature of the novel form-what liberties it allows, what boundaries it should not cross. Readers are privy to the writing process: research conducted, choices made, inspirations found. Although Lackey and some of his subjects raise the idea of postmodernism and the rise of psychology as reasons for the emergence of the biographical novel, the book is not heavy on theory, nor is it necessary to have read all the books discussed. This collection will appeal to readers interested in why literature matters and how the past shines light on our present, our future, and our humanity. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Biographical fiction, American -- History and criticism.
Historical fiction, American -- History and criticism.
Truth in literature.
Realism in literature.
Novelists, American -- 21st century -- Interviews.
Novelists, American -- 20th century -- Interviews.
Publisher New York :2014
Other Titles Conversations with American biographical novelists
Contributors Lackey, Michael, editor.
Language English
Description ix, 264 pages ; 22 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 253-256) and index.
ISBN 9781623567415 (hardback)
1623567416 (hardback)
9781623568252 (paperback)
1623568250 (paperback)
Other Classic View