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Laurence Sterne: Early and Middle Years Paperback – 1 Jul 1992

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Product details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; New edition edition (1 July 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415080339
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415080330
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 5.1 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,710,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


Laurence Sterne, humorist, sentimentalist and Anglican divine, is recognized as one of the greatest English novelists, though he wrote only "Tristam Shandy" and "A Sentimental Journey". His interest in women, and his exposure of man's libidinous nature in his novels, have offended moralists. Yet Sir Herbert Read praised him as "one of the world's greatest humanists" and thought him an artist who brought us "as close to life as we can be". Arthur Cash, without taking sides in this debate, puts the facts of Sterne's life before the reader - his unhappy marriage, his faithlessness, his quarrels with his mother, his ambitons for preferment, but also his sad childhood, the enmity of his powerful uncle, and his conscientiousness as parish priest. Not a literary study, but a biography which emphasizes those experiences which informed Sterne's fiction, the book is based on an exhaustive search for original documents, and a study of the social, political and ecclesiastical institutions which shaped Sterne's world.

We see the novelist as a soldier's child, student, struggling young cleric, Yorkshire farmer and Judge of the spiritual courts, and trace his literary development from political hack to humorist. This book should be of interest to undergraduates and academics in English literature. It is also available in a two-volume set, price: #23.00

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