Irving HoweOs classic investigation of the role of revolutionary ideas in fiction is here reprinted in a new paperback edition. In establishing the role of the political novel and tracing its growth into the twentieth century, Mr. Howe draws his examples from StendhalOs The Red and the Black, DostoevskyOs The Possessed, Joseph ConradOs The Secret Agent, and Ivan TurgenevOs Fathers and Sons. He also explains why American novels failed to integrate ideology, including Henry AdamsOs Democracy, Henry JamesOs The Bostonians, and Nathaniel HawthorneOs The Blithedale Romance. His discussion of political fiction after World War II touches on Milan KunderaOs The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, V. S. NaipaulOs A Bend in the River, and Alexander SolzhenitsynOs The First Circle, among others. In all, Politics and the Novel offers the most enduring and authoritative view of the subject.
Irving Howe (1920-1993), a leading New York intellectual, founded Dissent magazine and was regarded as one of the most influential American literary critics. His other books include World of Our Fathers, A Treasury of Yiddish Stories, and William Faulkner (published by Ivan R. Dee).