Graham Greene's Fictions: The Virtues of Extremity

Synopsis

Despite an abundance of critical interpretations of Graham Greene's work, shortcomings exist within the available literature on Greene. In addition to redundancy and lack of a broad focus, most criticism of Greene's fiction has a tendency to force Greene into the mold of a Catholic writer, consequently flattening the peaks and valleys of his uncompromising vision of life. Graham Greene's Fictions is Cares Baldridge's response to this critical disservice -- an exploration that ignores the critical preconceptions of Greene's fiction and treats him as one of the leading British novelists of the twentieth century.

More than a general assessment, Graham Greene's Fictions offers a fresh interpretation of familiar texts and attempts to discover within Greene's work a structure of thought that has not yet been seen with sufficient clarity. Each chapter focuses on a major aspect of Greene's thought as expressed in his novels. Greene's caustic attitude toward middle-class orthodoxies and his critiques ofthe three reigning ideologies of his time -- Christianity, Marxism, and liberalism -- are just two of the areas that Baldridge explores in Graham Greene's Fictions. Although five of Greene's novels are singled out for extensive evaluation -- Brighton Rock, The Power and the Glory, The Heart of the Matter, The Comedians, and The Honorary Consul -- most of his fiction is discussed throughout the course of the book.

The first critical evaluation of Greene's entire literary canon since his death in 1991, this innovative study is a reconsideration of Greene's major novels, as well as a recasting of his overall worldview. Written for both the scholar and the general reader, Graham Greene's Fictionssuccessfully captures the attention of all readers whether it is the first or the fifty-first work of Greene criticism one has read.

Additional information

Contributors:
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Columbia, MO
Publication year:
  • 2000