Skip to main content
Back to Results
Cover image of Genealogical Fictions
Cover image of Genealogical Fictions
Share this Title:

Genealogical Fictions

Cultural Periphery and Historical Change in the Modern Novel

Jobst Welge

Publication Date
Binding Type
Request Exam CopyRequest Review Copy

Explores the enduring link between national space and genealogy in the modern novel.

Winner of the CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title of the Choice ACRL

Taking its cue from recent theories of literary geography and fiction, Genealogical Fictions argues that narratives of familial decline shape the history of the modern novel, as well as the novel’s relationship to history. Stories of families in crisis, Jobst Welge argues, reflect the experience of historical and social change in regions or nations perceived as "peripheral." Though geographically and temporally diverse, the novels Welge considers…

Explores the enduring link between national space and genealogy in the modern novel.

Winner of the CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title of the Choice ACRL

Taking its cue from recent theories of literary geography and fiction, Genealogical Fictions argues that narratives of familial decline shape the history of the modern novel, as well as the novel’s relationship to history. Stories of families in crisis, Jobst Welge argues, reflect the experience of historical and social change in regions or nations perceived as "peripheral." Though geographically and temporally diverse, the novels Welge considers all demonstrate a relation among family and national history, genealogical succession, and generational experience, along with social change and modernization.

Welge’s wide-ranging comparative study focuses on the novels of the late nineteenth century, but it also includes detailed analyses of the pre-Victorian origin of the genealogical-historical novel and the evolution of similar themes in twentieth-century literature. Moving through time, he uncovers often-unsuspected novelistic continuities and international transformations and echoes, from Maria Edgeworth’s Castle Rackrent, published in 1800, to G. Tomasi di Lampedusa’s 1958 book Il Gattopardo.

By revealing the "family resemblance" of novels from Great Britain, Italy, Spain, Portugal, and Brazil, this volume shows how genealogical narratives take on special significance in contexts of cultural periphery. Welge links private and public histories, while simultaneously integrating detailed accounts of various literary fields across the globe. In combining theories of the novel, recent discussions of cultural geography, and new approaches to genealogical narratives, Genealogical Fictions addresses a significant part of European and Latin American literary history in which texts from different national cultures illuminate each other in unsuspected ways and reveal the repetition, as well as the variation, among them. This book should be of interest to students and scholars of comparative literature, world literature, and the history and theory of the modern novel.

Jump to
Quick Add
Genealogical Fictions

Jobst Welge

Publication Date
Binding Type
Request Exam CopyRequest Review Copy
Related

Related Books

Cover image of Why Do We Care about Literary Characters?
Why Do We Care about Literary Characters?

Blakey Vermeule

$35.00
Quick Add
Why Do We Care about Literary Characters?

Blakey Vermeule

Publication Date
Binding Type
Cover image of Introduction to Cognitive Cultural Studies
Introduction to Cognitive Cultural Studies

edited by Lisa Zunshine

$40.00
Quick Add
Introduction to Cognitive Cultural Studies

edited by Lisa Zunshine

Publication Date
Binding Type
Cover image of Strange Concepts and the Stories They Make Possible
Strange Concepts and the Stories They Make Possible

Lisa Zunshine

$34.00
Quick Add
Binding Type
Cover image of Getting Inside Your Head
Getting Inside Your Head

Lisa Zunshine

$35.00
Quick Add
Getting Inside Your Head

Lisa Zunshine

Publication Date
Binding Type
Preorder
Cover image of A Centaur in London
A Centaur in London

Fabian Kraemer

$60.00
Quick Add
A Centaur in London

Fabian Kraemer

Publication Date: April 25, 2023
Binding Type
Reviews

Reviews

"Jobst Welge's impressive new book... argues deftly for an intimate relation between national geography and historical narrative."

"Jobst Welge's impressive new book... argues deftly for an intimate relation between national geography and historical narrative."

One of the most significant critical works about the European/American novel since Ian Watt's The Rise of the Novel (1957).

Though all of the texts considered are written from an (embattled) periphery, none ultimately adopts a posture that is merely melancholic, nostalgic, or politically reactionary. In Welge’s hands, and considered as a corpus, they are shown instead to speak back in complicating ways to nineteenth century master narratives of modernity, the nation-state, and the bourgeoisie.

See All Reviews
About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
272
ISBN
9781421414355
Table of Contents

List of Abbreviations
Acknowledgments
1. Introduction
2. Periphery and Genealogical Discontinuity: The Historical Novel of the Celtic Fringe (Maria Edgeworth and Walter Scott)
3. Progress and Pessimism

List of Abbreviations
Acknowledgments
1. Introduction
2. Periphery and Genealogical Discontinuity: The Historical Novel of the Celtic Fringe (Maria Edgeworth and Walter Scott)
3. Progress and Pessimism: The Sicilian Novel of Verismo (Giovanni Verga and Federico De Roberto)
4. National and Genealogical Crisis: The Spanish Realist Novel (Benito Pérez Galdós)
5. Nature, Nation, and De-/Regeneration: The Spanish Regional Novel (Emilia Pardo Bazán)
6. Dissolution and Disillusion: The Novel of Portuguese Decline (Eça de Queirós)
7. Surface Change: A Brazilian Novel and the Problem of Historical Representation (Machado de Assis)
8. The Last of the Line: Foretold Decline in the Twentieth- Century Estate Novel (José Lins do Rego)
9. Death of a Prince, Birth of a Nation: Time, Place, and Modernity in a Sicilian Historical Novel (G. Tomasi di Lampedusa)
10. Epilogue: The Perspective from the End
Notes
Bibliography
Index

Author Bio
Featured Contributor

Jobst Welge

Jobst Welge teaches Romance literature and cultural studies at the University of Konstanz.