I was reading an article recently by the literary novelist Will Self in which he proclaimed, if not quite the death of the novel, the certainly the demise of literary fiction. You can read his full piece here.
His central argument is that the serious literary novel has been pushed from the mainstream and has become more like classical music, the preserve of an interested minority.
While I do believe the novel, and reading generally is being changed by the digital age, I’m not sure I buy his idea about this shift in the place of the serious novel. I mean, it was always a minority interest wasn’t it?
Does anyone really think coal miners got round a table in the pub in 1913 to discuss how DH Lawrence had portrayed their lifestyle in Sons and Lovers? Then as now the serious novel was the preserve of the few…
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