Inner Workings

Inner Workings

Literary Essays, 2000-2005

Book - 2007 | 1st American ed
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"Insightful, challenging yet accessible, these essays demonstrate Coetzee's sharp eye and unwavering critical acumen. Written with great clarity and precision, they offer a window into these twenty texts that will be fresh and illuminating for readers already familiar with them and also provide an introduction and analysis for those approaching them for the first time."--BOOK JACKET.
Publisher: New York : Viking, c2007
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9780670038657
0670038652
Branch Call Number: 809 COE
Characteristics: xiv, 304 p. ; 23 cm

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RogerDeBlanck Jul 27, 2018

With the pieces in Inner Workings (Coetzee’s second volume of literary essays after Stranger Shores), he examines the work of a wide range of writers, past and contemporary, ranging from Europe to the Americas. As was the style and scope of Stranger Shores, the critiques and discussions in this collection are accessible, but challenging at times in their erudition. Coetzee showcases his inquisitive mind for analysis and interpretation throughout these pieces. He raises questions that reveal his surefooted understanding of the lives of writers and an intense interaction with their works. He writes with flawless command of subjects, whether it is psychology, history, or some other field or discipline pertinent to his study. He is masterful at describing and summarizing texts, but also brilliant at uncovering deeper meanings. The sum total of each essay is fascinating in its discussion of literary figures and their works. As a former Nobel recipient, Coetzee views literature as more than stories. For him, it is the creative process of shaping reality by exposing and illuminating truths. In this way, he exalts the art of literature as a system that functions to identify, investigate, and ultimately change reality. These essays show how this process of change links inseparably with a writer’s experiences.

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