This introduction to Waugh’s complete fiction devotes a chapter to each of his novels in chronological order, providing a lucid outline of his creative and spiritual trajectory from carefree unbeliever to committed Catholic, from modernist to traditionalist, from comic satirist to ironic realist. The critical analysis of each novel is preceded by a biographical introduction with an unprecedented focus on apparently trivial experiences in Waugh’s life which had a significant impact on the themes, images, and structures peculiar to that novel. Waugh always rated his linguistic and structural craft as a novelist above the generally admired criteria of characterisation and psychological realism inherited from the nineteenth century novel. This study aims to show exactly how ingeniously and wittily his novels are constructed, and how vitally his art is allied to his profoundly moral vision. It is an energetic apologia for an author commonly accepted as a comic stylist, and denigrated as a reactionary bigot of unspeakable opinions.
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Published December 11, 2016
by Northcote House Publishers.
Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction.