Abstract and Keywords
This article begins with a series of assumptions involving literary naturalism as a literary movement, assumptions as to the nature of a literary text and as to naturalism as a narrative vision of life in America from about 1890 to the end of World War II. But the main assumption is that literary movements, in this instance literary naturalism, exist in textual forms that get transformed first by their major practitioners, then by a succeeding generation of authors, and finally by the rise of critical theories that involve transformations in the text itself and the way the text is read. There is thus no Literary Naturalism—but rather literary naturalisms—and the task of the literary critic is to describe how the core text works and to tabulate the variations in its being and evolution.
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