Cover: The Art of Being: Poetics of the Novel and Existentialist Philosophy, from Harvard University PressCover: The Art of Being in HARDCOVER

The Art of Being

Poetics of the Novel and Existentialist Philosophy

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Product Details


$46.50 • £37.95 • €42.00

ISBN 9780674983656

Publication Date: 12/10/2018


304 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

1 photo


Anyone interested in the debates that have convulsed the study of the novel in recent years should read this book. It does more than any other piece of writing I’ve encountered to clarify the underlying stakes of the arguments about close reading versus distant, analog versus computational, depth versus surface… Ong’s masterful book raises questions that I suspect students of the novel will be grappling with for a long time.—Michael Clune, Critical Inquiry

The Art of Being is brilliant—a beautifully conceived book that brings existentialist philosophy into creative dialogue with literary texts. Full of original and compelling insights into the philosophical content of the novels examined, the intricate readings are absorbing and show how literature subtly reaches beyond itself into our lives.—Garry L. Hagberg, Bard College

Yi-Ping Ong wears her immense learning lightly. Her philosophical and literary analyses are elegant and supremely intelligent, and the range of figures that her book draws together results in some startling constellations. The Art of Being is a model of philosophical criticism.—Robert Chodat, Boston University

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