Sexuality and the Erotic in the Fiction of Joseph Conrad

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Bloomsbury Academic, Mar 23, 2007 - Literary Criticism - 178 pages

Awarded third place for The Adam Gillon Book Award in Conrad Studies 2009
The book presents a sustained critique of the interlinked (and contradictory) views that the fiction of Joseph Conrad is largely innocent of any interest in or concern with sexuality and the erotic, and that when Conrad does attempt to depict sexual desire or erotic excitement then this results in bad writing. Jeremy Hawthorn argues for a revision of the view that Conrad lacks understanding of and interest in sexuality. He argues that the comprehensiveness of Conrad's vision does not exclude a concern with the sexual and the erotic, and that this concern is not with the sexual and the erotic as separate spheres of human life, but as elements dialectically related to those matters public and political that have always been recognized as central to Conrad's fictional achievement. The book will open Conrad's fiction to readings enriched by the insights of critics and theorists associated with Gender Studies and Post-colonialism.

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About the author (2007)

Jeremy Hawthorn is Professor of Modern British Literature at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology and winner of Ian P. Watt Prize for Excellence in Conrad Scholarship 2009. He has recently edited Conrad's Under Western Eyes and The Shadow-Line for the newWorld's Classics edition (both OUP, 2003) and hisother publications include Joseph Conrad: Narrative Technique and Ideological Commitment (Edward Arnold, 1990).

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