Reading Practice

Choose one of the writers from any of the historical periods I have discussed. Read a selection of his or her work. Choose a writer from a different period and compare the writers' narrative strategies.

History reveals that the novel, like any art form, is a product of its context. Novels reflect the specific historical moment in which they were written. You cannot write a Victorian novel in this era of "postmodernity." That is not to say that you could not write an effective novel set in Victorian times, but you, too, are context-bound. You don't have to write like Calvino or Kathy Acker. You may completely reject postmodernist thinking. But you will always be writing from your unique cultural perspective. Fortunately, you are writing in exciting times.

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