The Genesis of Secrecy: On the Interpretation of Narrative (Revised)


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Harvard University Press
Publish Date
6.15 X 0.51 X 9.29 inches | 0.63 pounds
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About the Author

Frank Kermode (1919-2010) is the author of many books, including Shakespeare's Language (FSG, 2000), Not Entitled (FSG, 1995), Forms of Attention, and The Sense of an Ending. He taught extensively in the United States, and lived in Cambridge, England.


Of all his books, [this is] the one that sheds the fullest light on his critical ideals and philosophy, and was also the most ambitious and controversial... Kermode's insight was that interpretation is always a way of telling a new story. The comparison of secular and sacred interpretation of narrative was shocking to many... The importance of The Genesis of Secrecy is that it expresses Kermode's profound distrust of any system of reading that is coercive.-- (06/09/2011)
The Genesis of Secrecy is important partly because of its method and partly because of its subject matter. The texts Kermode uses to illustrate 'the interpretation of narrative' are the most familiar and important in Western civilization: The Gospels, according to Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John. And the method is a disarming and delicate blend of the best work done recently in narrative theory by semiotic and post-structuralist critics, fortified by an impressive but unobtrusive acquaintance with biblical scholarship and hermeneutics.--Washington Post Book World
The thesis is well wrought, the scholarship varied and well-distributed, and the examples clear and deft.--Kirkus Reviews