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Henry James Goes to War

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Edited By Miroslawa Buchholtz, Dorota Guttfeld and Grzegorz Koneczniak

Within the past decades, Henry James has been seen going to the movies and to Paris, both far more likely destinations for him than battlefields of the modern world. Sending him off to war seems to be a preposterous idea, but the exaggeration inscribed in the title of the present volume is meant to stress the historicity of wars and battles underlying James’s life and work, quite apart from conflict on which literature thrives at all times. The book consists of five parts devoted to various forms and aspects of conflict. It deals with both literal and metaphorical battles of which the author was aware or in which he was involved. Apart from addressing James’s attitude to two major conflicts, the Civil War and World War One, the articles range from critical discussions of James’s biography, criticism, and fiction, to studies of the intertextual connections between his œuvre and works of both past and present authors.
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Colm Tóibín: “Wrestling” with the Master

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Robert Kusek

The idea of a Western democratic conversation between friends has never produced a single concept. (Deleuze & Guattari 1994: 6)

As “Transcending” argues, there are ways of transcending that are human and “internal,” and other ways that involve fight and repudiation. It seems plausible that in pursuit of the first way [...] the imagination and the terms of the literary artist are indispensable guides; as James suggests, angels of and in the fallen world, alert in perception and sympathy, lucidly bewildered, surprised by the intelligence of love. (Nussbaum 1990: 53)

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