Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Writing Life: Early Twentieth-Century Autobiographies of the Artist-Hero$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Mhairi Pooler

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781781381977

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781781381977.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 13 April 2021

‘The Very Complexion of the Mirror’

‘The Very Complexion of the Mirror’

(p.1) Introduction ‘The Very Complexion of the Mirror’
Writing Life: Early Twentieth-Century Autobiographies of the Artist-Hero

Mhairi Pooler

Liverpool University Press

The introduction’s title is taken from a quote by Henry James that underlines the book’s focus on the self-theorising artist: the idea that autobiographical writing shows the author’s mirrored reflection as well as an examination of the reflective surface itself. This idea is introduced alongside other key themes of the book, including the concern with genre, especially the mixed genre of ‘creative autobiography’ and how it compares with the Künstlerroman. The choice of authors studied and their interconnections are explained. It is described how each of the works focused on is a response to the moment of its composition – to the new century, to the shock of the First World War, to the experiments in self-expression or to the uncertainty of the interwar years – making Hans Georg Gadamer’s notion of the ‘historical horizon’ important to the study. This discussion dwells on Virginia Woolf’s idea that ‘human character changed’ in 1910.

Keywords:   Creative Autobiography, Künstlerroman, Autobiography theory, Self-theorising, Historical Horizon, Henry James, Gadamer, Virginia Woolf

Liverpool Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.