Chorus and Agon in the political novel: Staging left-wing arguments in H.G. Wells, Iris Murdoch and Doris Lessing

Taunton, Matthew (2021) Chorus and Agon in the political novel: Staging left-wing arguments in H.G. Wells, Iris Murdoch and Doris Lessing. MFS: Modern Fiction Studies, 67 (2). pp. 247-271. ISSN 0026-7724

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Abstract

The novel of explicit political commitment is often seen as simplistic and formally naïve by left-leaning critics, who prefer the Jamesonian political unconscious. Yet political novels stage left-wing arguments in artful ways that not only situate arguments against counter arguments, but also test their efficacy in the embodied social lifeworld of the text. This essay uses Chantal Mouffe’s work on agonism to frame readings of H. G. Wells’s Kipps, Iris Murdoch’s Under the Net, and Doris Lessing’s A Proper Marriage. It shows how monological left-wing chorus characters bring counter-hegemonic ideas into the texts, testing the limits of liberal discussion novels.

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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2020 00:53
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2021 00:21
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/77992
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