Drawing on his experiences as a young man in the Great Depression and the Second World War, Kurt Vonnegut created a new style of fiction responsive to the post-war world and unique in its appeal to both popular audiences and avant-garde critics. His work was profoundly innovative and yet perfectly lucid. In this comprehensive introductory study, originally published in 1982, Jerome Klinkowitz traces Vonnegut’s influences within the American middle class, his early efforts as a short-story writer for magazines in the 1960s and his startling and unprecedented success as a bestselling experimental novelist with Slaughterhouse-Five. His self-consciously moral posture led to readers throughout the world accepting him as their spokesman for humane values, a role which Klinkowitz considers within the context of his work.
General Editors’ Preface. Preface and Acknowledgements. A Note on the Texts. 1. Vonnegut and the New Novel 2. The Formula Novel: Player Piano, The Sirens of Titan and Mother Night 3. From Formula Toward Experiment: Cat’s Cradle and God Bless You, Mr Rosewater 4. The Personal Novels: Slaughterhouse-Five, Breakfast of Champions, Slapstick and Jailbird 5. From Metaphor to Discourse. Notes. Bibliography.
Routledge Library Editions: Modern Fiction (26 volume set) contains titles originally published between 1977 and 1997. It includes titles on the roles of women in literature, fantasy as a genre, a source guide to science fiction and many titles by renowned academics looking at specific novelists, the progression of their work and how it has been influential within modern fiction. Covering writers such as Iris Murdoch, John le Carré, Doris Lessing, Kurt Vonnegut and others, this collection will be of particular interest to students of literature and literary criticism.