The Prose of Things: Transformations of Description in the Eighteenth Century by Cynthia Sundberg Wall
Virginia Woolf once commented that the central image of Robinson Crusoe is an object - a large pot of pottery. Wolff and other critics pointed out that early modern prose…
The Prose of Things synopsis
Virginia Woolf once commented that the central image of Robinson Crusoe is an object - a large pot of pottery. Wolff and other critics pointed out that early modern prose is full of things, but naked of preparation and description. Explaining how the empty and indistinct spaces of these writings have turned into the refined landscapes and rich interior designs of the Victorian novel, Cynthia Wall argues that transformation is not limited to literary representation but has evolved in cultural perception.
In "Scattering of Things," the Wall analyzes literary works in the context of natural sciences, consumer culture, and philosophical change to show how and why space visualization and representation in the 18th century narrative and other prose narratives are visible. The wall studies maps, scientific publications, rural house guides and auction catalogs to highlight the thick descriptions of interior interiors.
In view of the prose works of John Bunyan, Samuel Peppis, Avra Behn, Daniel Defoe, Samuel Richardson, David Hume, Anne Radcliffe, and Sir Walter Scott, "Scattering of Things" is the first full account of the historical transformation in the art of description.
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