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19 Jan 2011
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£65.00
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9780230278752
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19 Jan 2011
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£18.99
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9780230278776
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DescriptionReviewsContentsAuthors

An enormous number of literary texts engaged with the build-up towards, undertaking of and aftermath of the recent invasion of Iraq. This book both provides a survey of such texts and presents a particular critical perspective on them. Many were regarded as taking a position for or against the invasion, but this study neither attempts to hold authors to account for their political choices nor tries to reach a moral consensus on the invasion. The idea here is to examine how certain literary texts appeared within and 'spoke' to a specific socio-political context, not merely to reckon with that context but to understand the condition of contemporary literature generally. Focusing primarily on literature in English made available in the U.S.A. and U.K. while debates about the Iraq invasion were uppermost in the public consciousness, texts in a wide range of forms are examined here: from poetry anthologies to individual poetry collections, plays on current events to revivals of classical plays, action thrillers to literary fiction and personal blogs.


Description

An enormous number of literary texts engaged with the build-up towards, undertaking of and aftermath of the recent invasion of Iraq. This book both provides a survey of such texts and presents a particular critical perspective on them. Many were regarded as taking a position for or against the invasion, but this study neither attempts to hold authors to account for their political choices nor tries to reach a moral consensus on the invasion. The idea here is to examine how certain literary texts appeared within and 'spoke' to a specific socio-political context, not merely to reckon with that context but to understand the condition of contemporary literature generally. Focusing primarily on literature in English made available in the U.S.A. and U.K. while debates about the Iraq invasion were uppermost in the public consciousness, texts in a wide range of forms are examined here: from poetry anthologies to individual poetry collections, plays on current events to revivals of classical plays, action thrillers to literary fiction and personal blogs.


Reviews

'Suman Gupta's Imagining Iraq is brilliantly written, engaging, and authoritative. With a depth and tightness of focus that is really unusual, this book should be given serious attention by academics and students.' - Jago Morrison, Senior Lecturer in English, Brunel University, UK

'An impressively thorough, theoretically sophisticated, thought-provoking account of the literature - poetry, fiction, drama, blogging - of the invasion of Iraq. The focus throughout is on what this writing tells us about the production, circulation and reception of literature in general, as well as about current notions of literary character and value.'
- Zachary Leader, Professor of English Literature, Roehampton University, UK

'In this valuable book, Gupta... engages with work in English that deals with the invasion of Iraq... In a balanced argument, the author acts out the anxieties the invasion created among publishers, authors, and readers, who debated heatedly about the possibility of making poetry subject to a political imperative...Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.' - A. S. Jawad, Duke University, CHOICE



Contents

Acknowledgements
Making War: Introduction
'Laws' for Poets: Poetry Anthologies
Exacting World: Individual Poetry Collections
To Smash the Mirror: Theatre
A Joint Enterprise: Fiction
Windows into Life-Worlds: Blogs and Conclusion
Conclusion
Bibliography
Index


Authors

SUMAN GUPTA Professor of Literature and Cultural History at the Open University, UK, and currently Honorary Senior Research Fellow at Roehampton University. Recent books include The Theory and Reality of Democracy: A Case Study in Iraq (2006), Social Constructionist Identity Politics and Literary Studies (2007), and Literature and Globalization (2009).