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The devil's topographer : Ambrose Bierce and the American war story

Author: David M Owens
Publisher: Knoxville : University of Tennessee Press, ©2006.
Edition/Format:   Book : State or province government publication : English : 1st edView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"In this new book, David M. Owens shows how David M. Bierce's involvement in the Civil War specifically influenced his fiction. By identifying and examining the actual terrain in which Bierce's stories are set in conjunction with his military experience and the historical record, this study demonstrates that the stories document Bierce's personal pilgrimage through the conflict and contends that thematic concerns in
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
History
Military history
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Owens, David M., 1954-
Devil's topographer.
Knoxville : University of Tennessee Press, c2006
(OCoLC)607696367
Named Person: Ambrose Bierce; Ambrose Bierce; Ambrose Bierce; Ambrose Bierce
Material Type: Government publication, State or province government publication, Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: David M Owens
ISBN: 1572334649 9781572334649
OCLC Number: 61499923
Description: xii, 166 p. : ill., maps ; 24 cm.
Contents: 1. Biography : Bierce's military and literary worlds --
2. Early war stories : 1861, West Virginia --
3. Midwar stories : 1862, Shiloh to the railroad --
4. Midwar stories : 1863, Stone's river to Chickamauga and Missionary ridge --
5. Late war stories : 1864, to Atlanta and Franklin --
Conclusion : The devil's topographer --
Afterword : Ambrose Bierce and the American war story.
Responsibility: David M. Owens.
More information:

Abstract:

"In this new book, David M. Owens shows how David M. Bierce's involvement in the Civil War specifically influenced his fiction. By identifying and examining the actual terrain in which Bierce's stories are set in conjunction with his military experience and the historical record, this study demonstrates that the stories document Bierce's personal pilgrimage through the conflict and contends that thematic concerns in them reflect his development as a soldier rather than as a writer.".

"Owens considers Bierce's twenty-two war stories chronologically according to the time of the action of the story. Arranging the pieces in such an order and plotting the locations of their settings yield an accurate chart of Bierce's own progress through the war. Thus, The Devil's Topographer uncovers and explores a crucially important autobiographical context in Bierce's Civil War fiction.".

"By bringing under careful scrutiny the biography, history, and geography of Bierce's settings, a geography never wholly fictional but seldom entirely factual, the book analyzes the variety of techniques that Bierce employs to create the verisimilitude and reader complicity that are characteristic of his best work. Owens breaks new ground by demonstrating the importance of considering the "testimony of landscape," or the input of the physical world.".

"The Devil's Topographer explores the wider implications of Bierce's contribution to war short fiction and the significance of the war story as a subgenre in American literature. This volume is a significant contribution to the body of literary commentary on Ambrose Bierce and to the study of the development of the American short story."--BOOK JACKET.

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