understanding the novel
Understanding the Novel
ISBN: 978-93-84082-09-3 • 2015 • HB • 286 pp. • ₹ 1195 • $ 59.95 • £ 39.95

Understanding the Novel: A Theoretical Overview


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Albeena Shakil
Assistant Professor, Department of English, O.P. Jindal Global Law School

This book reiterates that the novel remains a relevant and pertinent concept and that any reckoning with the form has to integrally involve its character as a flexible and incorporative genre. It revisits and collates theoretical debates over the generic fundamentals of the novel: the rise of the novel, its changing relation to realism, its ups and downs within the literary canon, its constant rejuvenation as a ‘novel’ or new form and successive pronouncements of its ‘death’, as well as the broad contours of generic incorporations in the course of its development. It also examines some aspects of the novel in India: the early preference for melodrama and sensation over realism, the novel’s late popularity in south India, the dominance of the short story over the novel in Urdu, and the unease with the globalized Indian-English novel.

‘Albeena Shakil’s Understanding The Novel: A Theoretical Overview is the result of a thoroughly researched doctoral thesis that theorizes the rich array of the novel form by contextualizing its genesis and development in the history of the middle class across European and Indian landscape.’

                                                                                                Kusha Tiwari, The Book Review

‘Albeena Shakil’s book is a fine exploration of many positions on the rise and development of the novel…essentially an ambitious survey of a vast and varied scholarship on the novel form and thoroughly interrogates the nexus between the rise and development of the novel, and the emergence of the middle class in Europe. The book successfully provides a competent overview of much that one needs to know about the novel, its growth, politics and its critics’

Bhoomika Meiling, Economic & Political Weekly

‘…it deserves appreciation for its thorough engagement and analysis of the genre of the novel and how it still continues to remain a significant area of study in the post liberalised globalised era of contemporary times.’

Bharti Arora, JSL: Journal of the School of Language, Literature and Culture Studies


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