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Johnson, Writing, and Memory demonstrates the importance of memory in Samuel Johnson's oeuvre. Greg Clingham argues that this is a notion of memory that is derived from the process of historical and creative writing, and is found to be embodied in works of literature and other cultural forms. He examines Johnson's writing, including his biographical writing, as it intersects with eighteenth-century thought on literature, history, fiction and law and in its subsequent compatibility with and resistance to modern theory. Clingham's widely researched study provides an account of Johnson's intellectual positions that incorporates the challenges they pose to recent critical theory, and argues for Johnson's inclusion in a new theorisation of terms such as 'authority', 'nature' and 'memory'. Clingham does this work of intellectual abstraction while remaining focused in the concrete realities of Johnson's writing itself, offering a theoretically nuanced and original account of Johnson's work.
Greg Clingham is Professor of English and Director of the University Press, Bucknell University. He has written and co-written several books.
List of abbreviations, Introduction: Johnson and authority; 1. Johnson and memory; 2. Johnson and nature; 3. Law, narrative, and memory; 4. Narrative, history, and memory in the Lives of the Poets; 5. Translation and memory in the Lives of the Poets; 6. Historiographical implications.
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- ID: 9780521816113
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