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Book Cover for: Anna Kavan: Mid-Century Experimental Fiction, Victoria Walker

Anna Kavan: Mid-Century Experimental Fiction

Victoria Walker

This first book-length study of Anna Kavan's writing contradicts earlier critical approaches that have figured her writing as sui generis by reading her comparatively alongside her contemporaries, especially Jean Rhys, Elizabeth Bowen, Muriel Spark and Doris Lessing. Taking Kavan's fiction as pivotal to understanding trends of experimentalism that emerged across the middle of the twentieth century, it offers close readings of her distinctive prose including her early Helen Ferguson texts, her writing of asylum incarceration, her wartime stories, and her postwar novels. Observing how her fiction challenges perceived divisions between experimental and realist writing, literary and popular genre and (late) modernist and postwar literatures, it focuses on the ways that Kavan's writing undermines fixed or knowable identity and explores the relationship between reality and fiction. This study not only brings necessary attention to a neglected writer, but also suggests new taxonomies for reading experimental fiction in the mid-twentieth century.

Book Details

  • Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
  • Publish Date: Jun 21st, 2023
  • Pages: 176
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 9.21in - 6.14in - 0.44in - 0.94lb
  • EAN: 9781474478946
  • Categories: Women AuthorsFeministEnglish, Irish, Scottish, Welsh

About the Author

Walker, Victoria: - "Victoria researches twentieth-century British women's prose fiction, especially experimental writing. She has published widely on Anna Kavan and edited a special issue of Women: A Cultural Review - 'Anna Kavan: New Readings' (Winter 2017-18) and a collection of Kavan's short writing, Machines in the Head (2019)."