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October 1981
254 pages  

6 x 9
9780822985549
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Making Up Society
The Novels of George Eliot
Fisher, Philip
Fisher places the work of George Eliot within the great evolution that constitutes the nineteenth-century English novel. He reports not only about her work, but about an evolving complex literary form.

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Philip Fisher is Felice Crowl Reid Professor of English and American Literature at Harvard University.
“An interesting mixture of the ambitiously new and the well-rehearsed in George Eliot criticism. . . . It contains several well-observed insights into George Eliot and the social novel.”—Review of English Studies

“Philip Fisher places the work of George Eliot securely within the great evolution which constitutes the nineteenth-century English novel. Fisher examines Eliot’s work as responding to ‘the loss of society,’ the breakdown between public life and individual moral history.”—Litir Newsletter of Victorian Studies

“[Fisher] concludes that Eliot’s novels are an attempt to find a new expression for both individual and society. . . . important to many students of the novel.”—Times Literary Supplement

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Fisher places the work of George Eliot within the great evolution that constitutes the nineteenth-century English novel. He reports not only about her work, but about an evolving complex literary form. Fisher examines Eliot’s work as responding to “the loss of society,” the breakdown between public life and individua moral history. As trust in the community as a base of moral life weakens, decisive changes occur: the English novel accommodated itself to the disappearance of society and changed from the representation of individuals as members of a social order to the description of the self surrounded by collections of unrelated others.
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