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Crime and Defoe: A New Kind of Writing Lincoln B. Faller

Crime and Defoe: A New Kind of Writing

Lincoln B. Faller

Published February 4th 2008
ISBN : 9780521060332
Paperback
284 pages
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 About the Book 

This book seeks to recover something of the original excitement, challenge and significance of Defoes four novels of criminal life by reading them within and against the conventions of early eighteenth-century criminal biography. Crime raised deeplyMoreThis book seeks to recover something of the original excitement, challenge and significance of Defoes four novels of criminal life by reading them within and against the conventions of early eighteenth-century criminal biography. Crime raised deeply troubling questions in Defoes time, not least as a powerful sign of the breakdown of traditional social authority and order. Arguing that Defoes novels, like criminal biography, provided ways of facing and working through, as well as avoiding, certain of the moral and intellectual difficulties that crime raised for him and his readers, Faller shows how the literary, even aesthetic qualities of his fiction contributed to these ends. Analysing the ways in which Defoes novels exploited, deformed and departed from the genre they imitated, this book attempts to define the specific social and political (which is to say moral and ideological) value of a given set of literary texts against those of a more ordinary form of narrative.