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Preface to the second edition

H. Porter Abbott
Affiliation:
University of California, Santa Barbara
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Summary

Narrative existed long before people gave it a name and tried to figure out how it works. It comes to us so naturally that, when we start to examine it, we are a bit like Monsieur Jourdain in Molière's Le bourgeois gentilhomme, who discovered he had been speaking prose all his life without knowing it. Accordingly, in this revised and expanded second edition, I have continued to imagine as my first reader someone without any preconceptions about the field of narrative. I trust this has kept me honest to the degree that it has helped me to look with a critical eye at my own preconceptions. In the interval since the final draft of the first edition of The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative was sent to the press (on, of all dates, September 11, 2001), much has been published in the robust field of narrative study, including four fine introductions to narrative as a specifically literary form, each of which, in its distinctive way, works well as a complement to this book. The interval saw much else, including the Routledge Encyclopedia of Narrative Theory, a scrupulously edited volume that is as comprehensive as it is indispensable.

I see all of this work, along with the work that has gone before, falling into an inverted pyramid. The present book is situated where the pyramid comes to a point: the transaction between the mind and the narrative medium that makes narrative happen.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2008

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  • Preface to the second edition
  • H. Porter Abbott, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Book: The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative
  • Online publication: 05 June 2014
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511816932.002
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  • Preface to the second edition
  • H. Porter Abbott, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Book: The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative
  • Online publication: 05 June 2014
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511816932.002
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Preface to the second edition
  • H. Porter Abbott, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Book: The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative
  • Online publication: 05 June 2014
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511816932.002
Available formats
×