16 oktober 2012

James Wood - The Broken Estate

[...] "realism", by contrast, is a historical term that originated in France in the 1850's (first applied to Courbet's paintings, then to Flaubert's fiction), and designates a certain set of conventions and expectations. Much fictional narrative produced nowadays is rather lazily "realistic" in this sense: people have "normal" names [...], they enter and leave rooms, eat meals, have sex, fall in love, converse with each other, and so on. They belong to the recongizable world [...]. There are rather too many sentences along the familiar lines of: "She toyed with her spaghetti while she spoke," or "He fixed himself a drink, sat down, and started to think furiously about what just happened." A certain level of well-selected detail to keep the balloon of versimilitude afloat ("The ice cubes jostled coldly in his glass"). The narrative action obeys the basic requirements of plausibility. And so on.

Fra introduksjonen, s. xvii

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