New Book Announcement - Affect Theory and Literary Critical Practice: A Feel for the Text

Stephen Ahern 's picture

edited by Stephen Ahern


Dear H-Emotions colleagues,

I wanted to let you know that the new collection I’ve edited is now out with Palgrave Macmillan. The essays included here may be of interest to scholars working in affect studies, in literary criticism and theory, and in the history of emotions.

Affect Theory and Literary Critical Practice:  A Feel for the Text  

This groundbreaking collection develops new approaches to reading literature that are informed by the insights of scholars working in affect studies across many disciplines, with essays that consider works of fiction, drama, poetry and memoir ranging from the medieval to the postmodern. While building readings of representative texts, contributors reflect on the value of affect theory to literary critical practice, asking: what explanatory power is affect theory affording me here as a critic? what can the insights of the theory help me do with a text? Contributors work to incorporate lines of theory not always read together, accounting for the affective intensities that circulate through texts and readers and tracing the operations of affectively charged social scripts. Drawing variously on queer, feminist and critical race theory and informed by ecocritical and new materialist sensibilities, essays in the volume share a critical practice founded in an ethics of relation and contribute to an emerging postcritical moment.

Affect Theory and Literary Critical Practice presents a series of detailed, informative, and often moving interventions in current literary studies. Bringing together subtle close readings of a wide array of literary texts, from Geoffrey Chaucer and William Shakespeare to Ta-Nehisi Coates and Helen Macdonald, the collection offers richly suggestive critical engagements with the cultural and political consequences of literature’s affective power.”

      —Andrew Bennett, Professor of English, University of Bristol, UK)