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Focusing on representational approaches to emotion during the years of American literary realism’s dominance and in the works of such authors as Edith Wharton, Alice Dunbar-Nelson, W. D. Howells, Charles Chesnutt, and others, Emotional Reinventions: Realist-Era Representations Beyond Sympathy contends that emotional representations were central to the self-conscious construction of high realism (in the mid-1880s) and to the interrogation of its boundaries. Based on realist-era authors’ rejection of “sentimentalism” and its reduction of emotional diversity (a tendency to stress what Karen Sanchez-Eppler has described as sentimental fiction’s investment in “overcoming difference”), Melanie Dawson argues that realist-era investments in emotional detail were designed to confront differences of class, gender, race, and circumstance directly. She explores the ways in which representational practices that approximate scientific methods often led away from scientific theories and rejected rigid attempts at creating emotional taxonomies. She argues that ultimately realist-era authors demonstrated a new investment in individuated emotional histories and experiences that sought to honor all affective experiences on their own terms.
 

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title page, Copyright, Acknowledgments
  2. pp. i-vi
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Introduction: Emotion on the Grid
  2. pp. 1-34
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  1. 1. Howells, Sympathy, and the Problem of Scale
  2. pp. 35-66
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  1. 2. Emotion and Representational Anxiety
  2. pp. 67-112
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  1. 3. Backward Glances: The Search for Emotional Origins
  2. pp. 113-154
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  1. 4. Cultivated Emotion: Race, the Body, and the Affectively Constituted Subject
  2. pp. 155-199
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  1. 5. Competitive Feeling: Multifocal Fiction and Affective Blood Sport
  2. pp. 200-248
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  1. Epilogue: The Work of Reinvention
  2. pp. 249-256
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 257-284
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 285-296
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 297-310
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780472121151
Related ISBN
9780472072705
MARC Record
OCLC
914289676
Pages
317
Launched on MUSE
2015-07-24
Language
English
Open Access
No
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