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The Arts of Angela CarterA Cabinet of Curiosities$
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Marie Mulvey-Roberts

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781526136770

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.7765/9781526136787

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Intermedial synergy in Angela Carter’s short fiction

Intermedial synergy in Angela Carter’s short fiction

(p.17) 1 Intermedial synergy in Angela Carter’s short fiction
The Arts of Angela Carter

Michelle Ryan-Sautour

Manchester University Press

When perusing Angela Carter’s journals in the archives at the British Library, the words ‘short story’ appear repeatedly, accompanied by fragments of poetry, fictional blurbs, reflections and quotations. Short narrative indeed appears to have been intertwined with her creative process, and seems to have functioned as a sort of laboratory in which she could play with ideas, and spin out critical fictions that challenge the reader’s perception of generic identity. The breadth and variety of her short fiction demonstrate the far-reaching intertextual and intermedial aspect of her writing. As a twentieth-century ‘Renaissance woman’, Carter’s borrowing ranges from high to low culture and moves beyond the limits of literature into areas as diverse as philosophy, the visual arts, psychoanalysis, cultural and religious iconography, radio, film and language theory. As a result, the edges of multiple disciplines are played with and highlighted in the shape-shifting production of short fiction throughout her career, ranging with her first collection Fireworks (1974) and culminating in American Ghosts and Old World Wonders (1993). This chapter studies how Carter’s short fiction develops throughout her career and draws upon the specificities of short narrative to propose powerful, multimedial spaces of fictional reflection to the reader.

Keywords:   narrative, short stories, bricolage, intermedial

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