Trauma has become a catchword of our time and a central category in contemporary theory and criticism. In this illuminating and accessible volume, Lucy Bond and Stef Craps:
- provide an account of the history of the concept of trauma from the late nineteenth century to the present day
- examine debates around the term in their historical and cultural contexts
- trace the origins and growth of literary trauma theory
- introduce the reader to key thinkers in the field
- explore important issues and tensions in the study of trauma as a cultural phenomenon
- outline and assess recent critiques and revisions of cultural trauma research
Trauma is an essential guide to a rich and vibrant area of literary and cultural inquiry.
Introduction: Not Even Past 1. The History of Trauma 2. Words for Wounds 3. Trauma Theories 4. The Future of Trauma Conclusion: The Limits of Trauma
"As an introduction to trauma theory and its applications to contemporary literary, artistic, and clinical work, the volume sets a high standard. It reminds us of the limitations of trauma studies as a dominant paradigm and exposes its controversies, while endeavoring to enlarge our understanding of this huge field. Trauma will be useful as an introduction for students who struggle with omnipresent and often confusing conceptions of trauma, but professionals and scholars could equally benefit from reading through its dense but clear summaries of a vast array of sources. I recommend the book whole-heartedly to anyone with an interest or need to gain greater familiarity with the meaning and pervasiveness of trauma at this moment of history."
Lewis Kirshner, Harvard Medical School, American Imago
"Overall, the work succeeds in its attempt to outline the historical trajectory of trauma studies and its application in literary analysis and other means of artistic and cultural production. Historical facts, researchers, works, studies, and terms most important to the development of the field are presented to the reader in clear and succinct language. This is certainly a work of reference and quick reference, useful for the more experienced researcher, while at the same time serving as introductory material of easy access and understanding for students new to the field. In this sense, the book fulfills its intended and announced function as a manual or guidebook, as it explores all the most relevant moments and themes for trauma studies, while also provoking reflections on the subject."
Joyce Silva Fernandes, Remate de Males