A Poetics of Unnatural Narrative

Edited by Jan Alber, Henrik Skov Nielsen, and Brian Richardson

Theory and Interpretation of Narrative


Literary Criticism/General
234 pp. 6x9

$33.95 paper 978-0-8142-5254-3
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The editors recommend the following links:

“Unnatural Narratology” at the Narrative Research Lab

“Dictionary of Unnatural Narratology” at the Narrative Research Lab

Narrative Research Lab

Books by Brian Richardson at Amazon.com


A Poetics of Unnatural Narrative touches on all of the relevant research fields and all of the important theoretical texts. There are many fascinating debates within the contributions, and some traditional narratological concepts are revisited with rewarding results. This volume promises to be an important and provocative contribution to narrative theory.” —Alan Palmer, author of Social Minds in the Novel

A Poetics of Unnatural Narrative offers a collection of foundational essays introducing the reader to the full scope of unnatural narrative theory: its meaning, its goals, its extent, its paradoxes. This volume brings together a distinguished group of international critics, scholars, and historians of literature that includes several of the world’s leading narrative theorists. Together, they survey many basic areas of narrative studies from an unnatural perspective: story, time, space, voice, minds, narrative levels, realism, nonfiction, hyperfiction, and narrative poetry. Rarely have these fundamental concepts been subjected to such an original and thoroughgoing reconceptualization. Much of the book is directed toward an investigation of experimental and antirealist work. Each essay focuses on texts and episodes that narrative theory has tended to neglect, and each provides theoretical formulations that are commensurate with such exceptional works. A Poetics of Unnatural Narrative articulates and delineates the newest and most radical movement in narrative studies. This anthology will be of great interest to students and scholars of narrative studies and of the history and theory of modern fiction.

Jan Alber is associate professor in the Department of English at the University of Freiburg, Germany. Henrik Skov Nielsen is professor in the Department of Aesthetics and Communication, Aarhus University, Denmark. Brian Richardson is professor in the Department of English at the University of Maryland.