Welcome to Narrative Theory and the Early Novel. The purpose of this site is to delineate several key concepts of narrative theory that are of particular significance to the novels of the long eighteenth century. When first introduced to these early novels, I was intrigued by aspects of their narrative structures that seemed to differ from those of their more modern counterparts. I believe that a greater understanding of narrative theory will help other readers, as it has me, to recognize and investigate the narrative choices of early novel writers and to appreciate the ways in which these writers helped shape their genre. It is my intention to equip visitors to my site with the conceptual knowledge and vocabulary to better shape and articulate their questions and observations about these narratives.
Narrative theory is a vast discipline; included here are but some of its most significant
aspects, carefully selected for their relevance to the eighteenth-century novel. I have attempted to explain each concept as clearly and concisely as possible and to offer further clarity with an accompanying example from an early novel. It is my hope that each visitor to my site will leave with some new thoughts on narration that they will consider in their future reading. Thank you for visiting, and enjoy!
Wayne State University