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Wayne Booth (1921 2005)

Related: rhetoric - fiction - literary theory - unreliable narrator

The Rhetoric of Fiction (1983) - Wayne Booth [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]


Wayne Clayson Booth (February 22, 1921 October 10, 2005) was an American literary critic. He was the George M. Pullman Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus in English Language & Literature and the College at the University of Chicago. His work followed largely from the Chicago school of literary criticism.

He was born in American Fork, Utah and educated at Brigham Young University and the University of Chicago.

His major work was The Rhetoric of Fiction. In this book, Booth argues that all narrative is a form of rhetoric. The speaker in narrative is the author or, more specifically, the implied author.

The implied author is a compromise between old-fashioned biographical criticism, and the new critics who argued that one can only talk about what the text says. Booth argued that it is impossible to talk about a text without talking about an author, because the existence of the text already implies the existence of an author. Booth recognizes, however, that it may be that this author differs from the actual author.

Booth also notes, however, that this author is distinct from the narrator of the text. He uses the examples of stories with an unreliable narrator to prove this point, observing that, in these stories, the whole point of the story is lost if one confuses narrator and author. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wayne_C._Booth [Mar 2006]

The Rhetoric of Fiction (1983) - Wayne Booth

The Rhetoric of Fiction (1983) - Wayne Booth [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

See also: persuasion - fiction - literary theory

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