"For so long description has seemed the simplest part of what the novel does, the inert counterpart to narrated action and reflection. In overturning that assumption, Zhang gives us a whole new modernism and, in a way, a whole new novel, since the light cast by her utterly convincing readings of James, Proust and Woolf reflects both backward and forward across the entirety of its history. Strange Likeness models a form of criticism in which intensity and precision in the analysis of literary texts is what opens them anew to the most far-reaching questions of our relation to each other and to the physical world."
A shrewd and splendid study, elegantly conceived, timely, and persuasive. Strange Likeness is at once an incisively close study of James, Proust, and Woolf, and a far-reaching account of the overlooked descriptive vocation of twentieth-century fiction. With unbroken lucidity and verve, Zhang offers a powerful revisionary reading of the modernist novel.
Strange Likeness rearranges what we think we know about modernism’s relation to realism—and to questions of objectivity, psychology, social convention, and collective life. Zhang is a gifted critic, beautifully attentive to details and large patterns, precise in her analytic vocabulary, and admirably thorough in her range of theoretical and historical reference. Her lucid, ambitious book deserves to be widely read and debated.
- 19th Century American Literature - Literary Criticism
- 20th Century American Literature - Pre WWII - Literary Criticism
- 20th Century French Literature - Literary Criticism
- English Fiction & Prose Literature - 20th Century - Literary Criticism
- Fiction->History and criticism
- Women Authors - British - Literary Criticism