Spring 1959 • Vol. XXI No. 2 Book Reviews |

The New Criticism of the Novel

Daniel F. Howard THE NEW CRITICISM OF THE NOVEL CHARLES DICKENS: THE WORLD OF HIS NOVELS. By 1. Hillis Miller. Harvard University Press. $6.oo. DICKENS AT WORK. By John Butt and Kathleen Tillotson. Essential Books. $6.25. THE RISE OF THE NOVEL. By Jan Watt. University of California Press. $4.50. T HE NOVEL became the dominant form of creative literature in the mid-igth Century (if not earlier), but while changing techniques in poetry since the igth Century have been received with considerable critical skill, even greater innovations in the novel have found no corresponding critical response. The criticism of the novel just before World War II still consisted mainly of the suggestions of the novelists themselves-Jamcs, Flaubert, Gide, Forster-and the further comments of Percy Lubbock and Joseph Warren Beach. Indeed, the critical vacuum can be measured by the importance accorded such a slight book as Forster's Aspects of the Novel. After the War, a new interest in the formal criticism

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