Hermione Lee's critical 'estimation' of Bowen's work finds the author's witty, stylish treatment of manners and emotions to have an austere basis in her critique of the English middle classes. Underlying the struggles of will between individuals in her novels and stories is a diagnosis of the dislocation and dispossessin of a whole society. Her preccupation with betrayal and loss, and her interest in conflict (between innocence and experience, egotism and social pressures, memory and the present) are fully considered.
In estimating the value of the whole range of her work, the book pays particular attention to the Anglo-Irish context, to Elizabeth Bowen's extraordinary evocation of war-time London, to her penetration into the minds of children and adolescents, and to her special predilection for the macabre and the supernatural. It also considers her achievement as a critic and a historian.
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"Here's cause for rejoicing among old Bowen hands... Extremely intelligent and helpful... the best kind of advocate any novelist could desire" ( Sunday Times)
"Hermione Lee is especially good on Bowen's Burkean sense of the 18th century... Ms Lee deals with complexities in tactful detail... convincing in her analyses of individual novels" ( Observer)
"An intelligent, persuasive study... The most illuminating kind of criticism... an intelligent vision of the fiction [and] a balanced sense of literary context... Elizabeth Bowen makes us consider a distinguished writer anew" ( New Statesman)
Hermione Lee is President of Wolfson, College, Oxford. After teaching at the universities ofLiverpool and York, she became the first woman Fellow of New College Oxford, and the first woman Goldsmith Professor of English Literature at Oxford University. She writes regularly for the Guardian Review, and is also a well known broadcaster and television critic. She was made a CBE in 2003. Her own critical and biographical studies include Willa Cather, the internationally acclaimed Virginia Woolf: A Life and Edith Wharton.
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Book Description Vintage, 1999. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110099277158