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IV. These questions are not intended to be merely rhetorical, but to prod EFT readers into some audacious thinking and, I hope, audacious conversing in Chicago. In the meantime, I shall welcome comments, suggestions, arguments, and applications to attend our meeting. I, for one, should like to think that Wells is still capable of stimulating some lively talk about Wells. Conversation in the Office: Since the Moore bibliography is certainly going to run through two issues of EFT and since we have the material to fill an additional issue, we are talking expenses and time and effort in the editorial office. We are planning to put out an issue which will contain some 18 or 20 previously unpublished letters by H.G. Wells, Robert Weeks' report on Wells from the New York meeting, perhaps Hepburn's report on Bennett, some of the bibliographical backlog on various EFT authors, and so on. However, we may have to include this issue in the i960 subscriptions, although we shall plan on an early December mailing. All the more reason why we would appreciate having subscription renewals as soon as possible. Also in the discussion stage are plans for future annotated bibliographies in depth of other EFT authors. Among the current candidates are Kipling and Stevenson and one of the later EFT authors. Plans are also already in the making for the I960 MLA Conference—authors being bandied about are George Moore, George Gissing, Ford Madox Ford, This is the time for all good scholars to come to the aid of their favorite authors. DISSERTATIONS Several dissertations on fairly broad topics or on topics which are tangential to EFT interests have come to my attention. Since thoy cannot readily be listed under EFT authors and since they may still be of interest to EFT readers, I shall publish descriptions of such items from timo to time under the above heading. I am grateful to Mr. Brennan and Mrs. Saveson for supplying the abstracts from which I quote below. 1. Neil Brennan. "The Aesthetic Tradition in the English Comic Novel." Ph. D. Thesis. University of Illinois. June, 1959. " is only a slight oversimplification to consider Oscar Wilde, though he wrote no comic novel, the focal agent" /of "the emergence of the comic novel as an art formjy···· His admiration for the works of Meredith and James on the one hand, and for Lewis Carroll's on the other, brought into conjunction two traditions.,.. To Wilde's defense of aesthetic form, surrealist logic, and a 'tough' worldview, friends such as E.F. Benson with DODO (1893), Robert Hichens with THE GREEN CARNATION (1894), Anthony Hope with THE DOLLY DlALDGUi.3(1894), Max Bcerbohm with ZULEIKA DOBSON (1896?-I91l) and *da Leverson with /~aJ7 novel like THE LIMIT (I9II) added refinements in technique (especially in dialogue and point of view) and created in accord with aesthetic canons of art fiction with the moral and emotional detachment requisite to fuse the serious and the conic. In the next decade Saki, Ronald Firbank and Norman Douglas carried on this embryonic tradition and between the war?3 Aldous Huxley, Evelyn Waugh and nnthony Powell brought the aesthetic comic novel to popular and critical prominence, aristocratic in background, conservative in inclination, and relatively non-satiric in mode, these novelists all ran counter to the proletarian, libertarian, and socially utilitarian literary trends of their time; yet the riovement associated with Kingsley Amis in the 1950s suggests that their eccentricity, instead of being overwhelmed by a hostile world, may persevere." V. In a letter, Mr. Brennan adds that the discussion of each of eleven novelists is preceded by ."a brief comic-theory-oriented biography and with some analysis of their views of the novel, of art, and of comedy.«.," Tangentially too I've discussed the comic novels of Wells, Bennett, Forster, Cary, Priestley, etc,... austen and Dickens, Peacock and Mallock are also discussed historically,.., as are the New Humorists Wilde so scathingly opposed in the 1880s,..e" Mrs. Marilyn Buehrer Saveson. "The Influence of Emile Zola Upon the Theory and Practice of Some English Novelists of His Time." Ph. D. Thesis. University of Cambridge (Girtin College), February, 1956. abstract previously published in...


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