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Sociology and literature: The voice of fact and the writing of fiction

McHoul, A. (1988) Sociology and literature: The voice of fact and the writing of fiction. Journal of Sociology, 24 (2). pp. 208-225.

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It is argued that relations between the discourses of sociology and literature need to be rethought outside the appropriative, yet in appropriate, terms of 'the sociology of ...'. The work of Foucault, and particularly his location of the joint emergence of literature and the human sciences at a single 'moment', are enlisted towards this end. While the human sciences are seen to rely, broadly, on a number of fictional postulates and categories, literature can also be seen as a source of serious and advanced social theory. To illustrate this second point, the article concludes with a preliminary analysis of the baptism passage from Mervyn Peake's Titus Groan.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Media, Communication and Culture
Publisher: Sage
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