Thursday, 31 March 2011

«Aspects of the Novel» - introductory

-  reading about reading:

I have had it on my mind for a while to read E. M. Forster’s «Aspects of the Novel». I had an idea that reading it would be heavy going. But to my surprise these essays are very forthcoming and encompassing. And even if they are written almost hundred years ago, they are very up to date. Which actually supports one of Forster’s own ideas; that one should see all great writers as contemporary.
… we cannot consider fiction by periods, we must not contemplate the stream of time. Another image better suits our powers: that of all the novelists writing their novels at once. (31)
Forster’s picture is:
… all the novelists are at work together in a circular room.
And then he goes on to say that we must examine literature in other ways then we do with science or other forms of art. Principles and systems are not applicable:
The final test of a novel will be our affection for it, as it is the test of our friends, and of anything else which we cannot define. (38)
I'm so happy I finally started reading it!

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