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The individual, society, and the novel

June 19, 2012

“What once appeared in the novel as the individual’s interaction with his society has now narrowed to a study of the individual’s reaction to society.  The modern novel of sensibilities does not appear to be a suitable medium for what Mailer calls “cutting a swath across the face of society,” for society is present only insofar as it cuts a swath across the face of the protagonist.[1]

[1] P99 Wisse, R. R. (1971). The Schlemiel as Modern Hero. Chicago & London, The University of Chicago Press.


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