Literary and Critical Theory

New Titles and Key Backlist


Routledge's Literary and Critical Theory books offer everything you could need from textbooks to research monographs. Take a look at Using Critical Theory, Lois Tyson’s introductory guide to the field, or The Routledge Queer Studies Reader, a comprehensive resource and textbook to this vibrant and interdisciplinary area. You can also see our extensive range of research and reference including the Routledge Companions series.


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Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

From Joyce to Rushdie, Modernism to Food Writing, Routledge Studies in Twentieth Century Literature looks at both the literature and culture of the 20th Century. This series is our home for cutting-edge, upper-level scholarly studies and edited collections. Considering literature alongside religion, popular culture, race, gender, ecology, travel, class, space, and other subjects, titles are characterized by dynamic interventions into established subjects and innovative studies on emerging topics.

  1. Dramatizing Time in Twentieth-Century Fiction

    By William Vesterman

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    How have twentieth-century writers used techniques in fiction to communicate the human experience of time? Dramatizing Time in Twentieth-Century Fiction explores this question by analyzing major narratives of the last century that demonstrate how time becomes variously manifested to reflect and...

    Published July 24th 2014 by Routledge

  2. James Joyce, Science, and Modernist Print Culture

    “The Einstein of English Fiction”

    By Jeffrey Drouin

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book makes an important intervention in the ongoing debates about modernism, science, and the divisions of early Twentieth-Century print culture. In order to establish Joyce's place in the nexus of modernism and scientific thought, Drouin uses the methods of periodical studies and textual...

    To Be Published December 29th 2014 by Routledge

  3. Poetry as Testimony

    Witnessing and Memory in Twentieth-century Poems

    By Antony Rowland

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book analyzes Holocaust poetry, war poetry, working-class poetry, and 9/11 poetry as forms of testimony. Rowland argues that testamentary poetry requires a different approach to traditional ways of dealing with poems due to the pressure of the metatext (the original, traumatic events), the...

    Published March 5th 2014 by Routledge

  4. Sound and Aural Media in Postmodern Literature

    Novel Listening

    By Justin St. Clair

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This study examines postmodern literature— including works by Kurt Vonnegut, William Gaddis, Don DeLillo, Philip K. Dick, Ishmael Reed, and Thomas Pynchon —arguing that one of the formal logics of postmodern fiction is heterophonia: a pluralism of sound. The postmodern novel not only bears...

    Published March 27th 2013 by Routledge

  5. Charles Bukowski, Outsider Literature, and the Beat Movement

    By Paul Clements

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book uses cultural and psycho-social analysis to examine the beat writer Charles Bukowski and his literature, focusing on representations of the anti-hero rebel and outsider. Clements considers the complexities, ambiguities, and contradictions represented by the author and his work, exploring...

    Published March 5th 2013 by Routledge

  6. The Epic Trickster in American Literature

    From Sunjata to So(u)l

    By Gregory E. Rutledge

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    Just as Africa and the West have traditionally fit into binaries of Darkness/Enlightenment, Savage/Modern, Ugly/Beautiful, and Ritual/Art, among others, much of Western cultural production rests upon the archetypal binary of Trickster/Epic, with trickster aesthetics and commensurate cultural forms...

    Published December 20th 2012 by Routledge

  7. AIDS Literature and Gay Identity

    The Literature of Loss

    By Monica B. Pearl

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book discusses the significance of late twentieth century and early twenty first century American fiction written in response to the AIDS crisis and interrogates how sexual identity is depicted and constructed textually. Pearl develops Freudian psychoanalytic theory in a complex account of the...

    Published December 19th 2012 by Routledge

  8. Contemporary Reconfigurations of American Literary Classics

    The Origin and Evolution of American Stories

    By Betina Entzminger

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    The number and popularity of novels that have overtly reconfigured aspects of classic American texts suggests a curious trend for both readers and writers, an impulse to retell and reread books that have come to define American culture. This book argues that by revising canonical American...

    Published August 24th 2012 by Routledge

  9. Autobiographies of Others

    Historical Subjects and Literary Fiction

    By Lucia Boldrini

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    In this volume, Boldrini examines "heterobiography"—the first-person fictional account of a historic life. Boldrini shows that this mode is widely employed to reflect critically on the historical and philosophical understanding of the human; on individual identity; and on the power relationships...

    Published June 25th 2012 by Routledge

  10. Wallace Stevens, New York, and Modernism

    Edited by Lisa Goldfarb, Bart Eeckhout

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This unique essay collection considers the impact of New York on the life and works of Wallace Stevens. Stevens lived in New York from 1900 to 1916, working briefly as a journalist, going to law school, laboriously starting up a career as a lawyer, getting engaged and married, gradually mixing with...

    Published May 28th 2012 by Routledge

  11. Literary Ghosts from the Victorians to Modernism

    The Haunting Interval

    By Luke Thurston

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book resituates the ghost story as a matter of literary hospitality and as part of a vital prehistory of modernism, seeing it not as a quaint neo-gothic ornament, but as a powerful literary response to the technological and psychological disturbances that marked the end of the Victorian era....

    Published May 8th 2012 by Routledge

  12. Locating Gender in Modernism

    The Outsider Female

    By Geetha Ramanathan

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book visits modernism within a comparative, gendered, and third-world framework, questioning current scholarly categorisations of modernism and reframing our conception of what constitutes modernist aesthetics. It describes the construction of modernist studies and argues that despite a range...

    Published May 8th 2012 by Routledge

  13. Exploring Magic Realism in Salman Rushdie’s Fiction

    By Ursula Kluwick

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    Kluwick breaks new ground in this book, moving away from Rushdie studies that focus on his status as postcolonial or postmodern, and instead considering the significance of magic realism in his fiction. Rushdie’s magic realism, in fact, lies at the heart of his engagement with the post/colonial....

    Published December 21st 2011 by Routledge

  14. Global Cold War Literature

    Western, Eastern and Postcolonial Perspectives

    Edited by Andrew Hammond

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    In countries worldwide, the Cold War dominated politics, society and culture during the second half of the twentieth century. Global Cold War Literatures offers a unique look at the multiple ways in which writers from Asia, Africa, Europe and North and South America addressed the military conflicts...

    Published December 21st 2011 by Routledge

  15. Salman Rushdie and Visual Culture

    Celebrating Impurity, Disrupting Borders

    Edited by Ana Cristina Mendes

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    In Salman Rushdie’s novels, images are invested with the power to manipulate the plotline, to stipulate actions from the characters, to have sway over them, seduce them, or even lead them astray. Salman Rushdie and Visual Culture sheds light on this largely unremarked – even if central – dimension...

    Published November 21st 2011 by Routledge

  16. Aesthetic Pleasure in Twentieth-Century Women's Food Writing

    The Innovative Appetites of M.F.K. Fisher, Alice B. Toklas, and Elizabeth David

    By Alice McLean

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book explores the aesthetic pleasures of eating and writing in the lives of M. F. K. Fisher (1908-1992), Alice B. Toklas (1877-1967), and Elizabeth David (1913-1992). Growing up during a time when women's food writing was largely limited to the domestic cookbook, which helped to codify...

    Published July 27th 2011 by Routledge

  17. Critical Approaches to American Working-Class Literature

    Edited by Michelle Tokarczyk

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book is one of the first collections on a neglected field in American literature: that written by and about the working-class. Examining literature from the 1850s to the present, contributors use a wide variety of critical approaches, expanding readers’ understanding of the critical lenses...

    Published May 24th 2011 by Routledge

  18. Making Space in the Works of James Joyce

    Edited by Valerie Benejam, John Bishop

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    James Joyce’s preoccupation with space—be it urban, geographic, stellar, geometrical or optical—is a central and idiosyncratic feature of his work. In Making Space in the Works of James Joyce, some of the most esteemed scholars in Joyce studies have come together to evaluate the perception and...

    Published May 5th 2011 by Routledge

  19. Italo Calvino's Architecture of Lightness

    The Utopian Imagination in An Age of Urban Crisis

    By Letizia Modena

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This study recovers Italo Calvino's central place in a lost history of interdisciplinary thought, politics, and literary philosophy in the 1960s. Drawing on his letters, essays, critical reviews, and fiction, as well as a wide range of works--primarily urban planning and design theory and history--...

    Published April 24th 2011 by Routledge

  20. Travel and Modernist Literature

    Sacred and Ethical Journeys

    By Alexandra Peat

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    Through close readings of works from Henry James to W. E. B. Du Bois, and from Virginia Woolf to Jean Rhys, this book discusses how fictional travelers negotiate and adapt various tropes of travel (such as quest, expatriation, displacement, and exile) as models for their own journeys. Specifically,...

    Published October 25th 2010 by Routledge

  21. Primo Levi's Narratives of Embodiment

    Containing the Human

    By Charlotte Ross

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This innovative reading of Primo Levi’s work offers the first sustained analysis in English of his representations of bodies and embodiment. Discussion spans the range of Levi’s works — from testimony to journalism, from essays to science fiction stories — identifying and tracing multiple...

    Published August 25th 2010 by Routledge

  22. Jewishness and Masculinity from the Modern to the Postmodern

    By Neil R. Davison

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This study examines the impact of racial, gender, and religious constructs of Jewish masculinity on a select group of male writers including George Du Maurier, Theodor Herzl, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, and Philip Roth during the Modernist and Postmodern eras. In reading the work of these...

    Published June 23rd 2010 by Routledge

  23. Gender, Ireland and Cultural Change

    Race, Sex and Nation

    By Gerardine Meaney

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book analyzes the roots of Irish social and sexual conservatism and the dramatic change in one of the most basic areas of human experience: how we understand our roles as men and women. It looks at the relationship between sexual and cultural dissent and the long, slow role of culture in...

    Published May 5th 2010 by Routledge

  24. Diary Poetics

    Form and Style in Writers’ Diaries, 1915-1962

    By Anna Jackson

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    The diary is a genre that is often thought of as virtually formless, a "capacious hold-all" for the writer’s thoughts, and as offering unmediated access to the diarist’s true self. Focusing on the diaries of Katherine Mansfield, Virginia Woolf, Antonia White, Joe Orton, John Cheever, and Sylvia...

    Published April 6th 2010 by Routledge

  25. Travel and Drugs in Twentieth-Century Literature

    By Lindsey Michael Banco

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book examines the connections between two disparate yet persistently bound thematics -- mobility and intoxication -- and explores their central yet frequently misunderstood role in constructing subjectivity following the 1960s. Emerging from profound mid-twentieth-century changes in how drugs...

    Published September 15th 2009 by Routledge

  26. Before Auschwitz

    Irène Némirovsky and the Cultural Landscape of Inter-war France

    By Angela Kershaw

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book analyses Irene Némirovsky’s literary production in its relationship to the literary and cultural context of the inter-war period in France. It examines topics of central importance to our understanding of the literary field in France in the period, such as: the close relationship between...

    Published August 10th 2009 by Routledge

  27. Gay Male Fiction Since Stonewall

    Ideology, Conflict, and Aesthetics

    By Les Brookes

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    The conflict between assimilationism and radicalism that has riven gay culture since Stonewall became highly visible in the 1990s with the emergence and challenge of queer theory and politics. The conflict predates Stonewall, however—indeed, Jonathan Dollimore describes it as "one of the most...

    Published July 8th 2008 by Routledge

  28. Latin American Writers and the Rise of Hollywood Cinema

    By Jason Borge

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book analyzes the initial engagement with Hollywood by key Latin American writers and intellectuals during the first few decades of the 20th century. The film metropolis presented an ambiguous, multivalent sign for established figures like Horacio Quiroga, Alejo Carpentier and Mário de Andrade...

    Published May 8th 2008 by Routledge

  29. Food, Poetry, and the Aesthetics of Consumption

    Eating the Avant-Garde

    By Michel Delville

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    From Plato’s dismissal of food as a distraction from thought to Kant’s relegation of the palate to the bottom of the hierarchy of the senses, the sense of taste has consistently been devalued by Western aesthetics. Kant is often invoked as evidence that philosophers consider taste as an inferior...

    Published November 15th 2007 by Routledge

  30. Anglophone Jewish Literature

    Edited by Axel Stähler

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    Anglophone Jewish literature is not traditionally numbered among the new literatures in English. Rather, Jewish literary production in English has conventionally been classified as ‘hyphenated’ and has therefore not yet been subjected as such to the scrutiny of scholars of literary or cultural...

    Published September 20th 2007 by Routledge

  31. Cartographic Strategies of Postmodernity

    The Figure of the Map in Contemporary Theory and Fiction

    By Peta Mitchell

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    The last fifty years have witnessed the growing pervasiveness of the figure of the map in critical, theoretical, and fictional discourse. References to mapping and cartography are endemic in poststructuralist theory, and, similarly, geographically and culturally diverse authors of twentieth-century...

    Published September 7th 2007 by Routledge

  32. Modernism and the Crisis of Sovereignty

    By Andrew John Miller

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This book describes how three of the most significant Anglophone writers of the first half of the twentieth century – Yeats, Eliot, and Woolf – wrestled with a geopolitical situation in which national boundaries had come to seem increasingly permeable at the same time as war among (and within)...

    Published August 3rd 2007 by Routledge

  33. Cold War Literature

    Writing the Global Conflict

    Edited by Andrew Hammond

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    The Cold War was the longest conflict in a century defined by the scale and brutality of its conflicts. In the battle between the democratic West and the communist East there was barely a year in which the West was not organising, fighting or financing some foreign war. It was an engagement that...

    Published September 27th 2005 by Routledge

  34. Modern Confessional Writing

    New Critical Essays

    Edited by Jo Gill

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    A comprehensive and scholarly account of this popular and influential genre, the essays in this collection explore confessional literature from the mid-twentieth century to the present day, and include the writing of John Berryman, Anne Sexton, Ted Hughes and Helen Fielding. Drawing on a wide...

    Published September 19th 2005 by Routledge

  35. Testimony from the Nazi Camps

    French Women's Voices

    By Margaret Anne Hutton

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    This interdisciplinary study intergrates historiographical, literary and cultural methodologies in its focus on a little known corpus of testimonial accounts published by French women deported to Nazi camps. Comprising epistemological and literary analyses of the accounts and an examination of the...

    Published December 9th 2004 by Routledge

  36. The Early Poems

    John Milton: Twentieth Century Perspectives

    Edited by Martin Evans

    Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

    First published in 2003. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company....

    Published November 7th 2002 by Routledge