The scholarship devoted to American literary realism has long wrestled with problems of definition: is realism a genre, with a particular form, content, and technique? Is it a style, with a distinctive artistic arrangement of words, characters, and description? Or is it a period, usually placed as occurring after the Civil War and concluding somewhere around the onset of World War I? This volume aims to widen the scope of study beyond mere definition, however, by expanding the boundaries of the subject through essays that reconsider and enlarge upon such questions.The Oxford Handbook of American Literary Realism aims to take stock of the scholarly work in the area and map out paths for future directions of study. The Handbook offers 35 vibrant and original essays of new interpretations of the artistic and political challenges of representing life. It is the first book to treat the subject topically and thematically, in wide scope, with essays that draw upon recent scholarship in literary and cultural studies to offer an authoritative and in-depth reassessment of major and minor figures and the contexts that shaped their work. Contributors here tease out the workings of a particular concept through a variety of authors and their cultural contexts. A set of essays explores realism's genesis and its connection to previous and subsequent movements. Others examine the inclusiveness of representation, the circulation of texts, and the aesthetic representation of science, time, space, and the subjects of medicine, the New Woman, and the middle class. Still others trace the connection to other arts--poetry, drama, illustration, photography, painting, and film--and to pedagogic issues in the teaching of realism. As a whole, this volume forges exciting new paths in the study of realism and writers' unending labor to represent life accurately.
Table of Contents
ContributorsIntroductionKeith NewlinPart I: Contexts of Realisms1. Transnational Precursors of American RealismRenate von Bardeleben2. American Realism and GenderDonna M. Campbell3. The Feminine Origins of American Literary RealismSophia Forster4. Realism and the Uses of HumorJohn Bird5. Local Color, World-System; or, American Realism at the PeripheryMark Storey6. Aesthetic Slippage in Realism and NaturalismAnita Duneer7. Realism as ModernismBrad EvansPart II: American Realisms8. Native American RealismLee Schweninger9. African American RealismChristine Wooley10. Ghetto Realism-and BeyondLori Harrison-Kahan11. Asian American RealismJulia H. Lee12. The Politics of U.S. Latino Literature and American RealismRamón J. Guerra13. Ethnic Caricature and the Comic SensibilityJean Lee Cole14, Racial RealismJolie A. ShefferPart III: Selling Realism15. The Realism Wars in the New York Periodical PressMark Noonan16. Realism and the Profession of AuthorshipGraham Thompson17. Realism's American Readers, 1860-1914Charles Johanningsmeier18. The Censorship of Realist and Naturalist Novels, Then and NowCaren TownPart IV: Representing the Real19. Science and Aesthetics in American RealismAndrew Hebard20. Realist Temporalities and the Distant PastMelanie Dawson21. Spaces of Consumption in American Literary RealismGary Totten22. Dwelling in American RealismElif Armbruster23. Realism and MedicinePhillip Barrish24. Realism and the New WomanLeslie Petty25. Realism and the Middle-Class Balancing ActPatrick ChuraPart V: Realism and the Other Arts26. Realism and PoetryJonathan Barron27. The Evolution of American Dramatic RealismEileen Herrmann28. Visual Art, Intertextuality, and Authorship in the Golden Age of IllustrationAdam Sonstegard29. American Realism and PhotographyAstrid Böger30. Realist Literature, Painting, and ImmediacyPeter Betjemann31. Realism and the Cinematic GazeNicolas S. WitschiPart VI: Pedagogical Issues32. Teaching Literary Realism in Transnational AmericaNathaniel Cadle33. Teaching American Realism in GermanyKlaus H. Schmidt34. Teaching and Researching American Literature and American Realism in ChinaYuping Wang35. Realism 2.0Augusta RohrbachIndex