Literary & Social CultureMonographs

Trotter, D. (1993) The English Novel in History 1895 – 1920


David Trotter (1993) The English Novel in History 1895 – 1920, London, Routledge

While covering a much wider spectrum than just invasion-scare fiction Trotter’s book provides an interesting context of literature and society within which the invasion-scare/future war genre sits. He especially covers the growth of spy fiction in the period 1900-1914.

Written specifically for students, David Trotter’s The English Novel History 1895—1920 provides the first detailed and fully comprehensive analysis of early twentieth-century English fiction.

Trotter examines the whole spectrum of fiction, from the innovations of Joyce’s Ulysses through to mass-market genres such as detective stories and spy-thrillers. He analyses the ways in which writers responded to contemporary preoccupations such as the spectacle of consumption and the growth of suburbia, or to anxieties about the decline of Empire, racial ‘degeneration’ and ‘sexual anarchy’. He also challenges the view that literature of the period can be interpreted as a neat procession from realism to Modernism.

The English Novel in History 1895—1920 is a stunning, thought-provoking study. It radically redefines our understanding of literary Modernism, and will become essential reading for all students of literature.  [Publisher’s Description]