Portrait of a Novel Henry James and the Making of an American Masterpiece

ISBN-10: 0871406705

ISBN-13: 9780871406705

Edition: 2013

Authors: Michael Gorra

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Henry James (1843–1916) hashad many biographers, but Michael Gorra has taken an original approach to thisgreat American progenitor of the modern novel, combining elements of biography,criticism, and travelogue in re-creating the dramatic backstory of James’smasterpiece, Portrait of a Lady (1881). Gorra, aneminent literary critic, shows how this novel—the scandalous story of theexpatriate American heiress Isabel Archer—came to be written in the firstplace. Traveling to Florence, Rome, Paris, and England, Gorra sheds new lighton James’s family, the European literary circles—George Eliot, Flaubert,Turgenev—in which James made his name, and the psychological forces thatenabled him to create this most memorable of female protagonists. Appealing toreaders of Menand’s The Metaphysical Club andMcCullough’s The Greater Journey, Portrait of a Novel provides a brilliant account of the greatest Americannovel of expatriate life ever written. It becomes a piercing detective story onits own.
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Book details

List price: $24.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: Liveright Publishing Corporation
Publication date: 8/5/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 416
Size: 5.75" wide x 8.50" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.748
Language: English

Michael Gorra teaches English at Smith College. His books include After Empire, The Bells in Their Silence, and, as editor, the Norton Critical Edition of Faulkner's As I Lay Dying. He lives in Northampton, Massachusetts.

Prologue: An Old Man in Rye
A Preparation for Culture
The Girl in the Doorway
A Native of No Country
A Superstitious Valuation
Along the Thames
The Marriage Plot
Her Empty Chair
An Unmarried Man
A London Life
The Envelope of Circumstances
Italian Journeys
Bellosguardo Hours
Mr. Osmond
An Uncertain Terrain
A Venetian Interlude
Sex and Serials, the Continent and the Critics
Maupassant and the Monkey
The Magazines
The Roccanera
The Art of Fiction
Putting Out the Lights
The Altar of the Dead
"I Was Perfectly Free"
Working in the Dark
The Second Chance
Sources and Notes
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