The predominant subject of these books was social mobility , usually from the northern working class to the southern middle class. Satiric watchfulness of social change was also the specialty of Kingsley Amis , whose deriding of the reactionary and pompous in his first novel, Lucky Jim , led to his being labeled an Angry Young Man.
As Amis grew older, though, his irascibility vehemently swiveled toward left-wing and progressive targets, and he established himself as a Tory satirist in the vein of Waugh or Powell. Thoughtfulness about the form of the novel and relationships between past and present fiction showed itself most stimulatingly in the works—generally campus novels—of the academically based novelists Malcolm Bradbury and David Lodge.
From the late s onward, the outstanding trend in fiction was enthrallment with empire.
17 Poems To Read When The World Is Too Much
The first phase of this focused on imperial disillusion and dissolution. Three half-satiric, half-elegiac novels by J.
Then, in the s, postcolonial voices made themselves audible. The Satanic Verses was understood differently in the Islamic world , to the extent that the Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini pronounced a fatwa, in effect a death sentence [later suspended], on Rushdie. Nor was India alone in inspiring vigorous postcolonial writing.
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Particularly notable is An Insular Possession , which vividly harks back to the founding of Hong Kong. Naipaul in his most ambitious novel, A Bend in the River Naipaul also chronicled aftermaths of empire around the globe and particularly in his native Caribbean. Nearer England, the strife in Northern Ireland provoked fictional response, among which the bleak, graceful novels and short stories of William Trevor and Bernard MacLaverty stand out.
Money is the most effectively focused of his books.
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The most gifted exponent of this kind of writing, which sought immediate access to the realm of the subconscious, was Angela Carter , whose exotic and erotic imagination unrolled most eerily and resplendently in her short-story collection The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories Jeanette Winterson also wrote in this vein. Having distinguished herself earlier in a realistic mode, as did authors such as Drabble and Pat Barker, Doris Lessing published a sequence of science fiction novels about issues of gender and colonialism, Canopus in Argos—Archives — As the end of the century approached, an urge to look back—at starting points, previous eras, fictional prototypes—was widely evident.
The historical novel enjoyed an exceptional heyday. Many novels juxtaposed a present-day narrative with one set in the past. It also made extensive use of period pastiche, another enthusiasm of novelists toward the end of the 20th century. In addition to the interest in remote and recent history, a concern with tracing aftereffects became dominatingly present in fiction.
17 Poems To Read When The World Is Too Much
Most subtly and powerfully exhibiting this, Ian McEwan —who came to notice in the s as an unnervingly emotionless observer of contemporary decadence—grew into imaginative maturity with novels set largely in Berlin in the s The Innocent  and in Europe in Black Dogs . These repercussions are also felt in Last Orders , a masterpiece of quiet authenticity by Graham Swift , a novelist who, since his acclaimed Waterland , showed himself to be acutely responsive to the atmosphere of retrospect and of concern with the consequences of the past that suffused English fiction as the second millennium neared.
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