James    Wood





James Wood

Author profile


born
in Durham, England , The United Kingdom
November 01, 1965

gender
male


About this author

James Douglas Graham Wood is an English literary critic, essayist and novelist. He is currently Professor of the Practice of Literary Criticism at Harvard University (a part-time position) and a staff writer at The New Yorker magazine.
Wood advocates an aesthetic approach to literature, rather than more ideologically-driven trends in academic literary criticism.
Wood is noted for coining the genre term hysterical realism, which he uses to denote the contemporary conception of the "big, ambitious novel" that pursues vitality "at all costs." Hysterical realism describes novels that are characterized by chronic length, manic characters, frenzied action, and frequent digressions on topics secondary to the story.


Average rating: 4.00 · 10,138 ratings · 937 reviews · 20 distinct works · Similar authors
How Fiction Works
3.95 of 5 stars 3.95 avg rating — 2,878 ratings — published 2008 — 28 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Broken Estate: Essays o...
4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 224 ratings — published 1999 — 11 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Fun Stuff: And Other Es...
3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 181 ratings — published 2012 — 12 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Irresponsible Self: On ...
4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 156 ratings — published 2004 — 8 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Book Against God
3.13 of 5 stars 3.13 avg rating — 171 ratings — published 2003 — 9 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Book of Common Prayer
4.53 of 5 stars 4.53 avg rating — 17 ratings — published 2012 — 3 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Myth of Sisyphus
by
4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 27,014 ratings — published 1942 — 109 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Golovlyov Family
by
4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 750 ratings — published 1870 — 30 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
Selected Short Stories
by
3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 722 ratings — published 1971 — 14 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
The Rainbow
by
3.65 of 5 stars 3.65 avg rating — 11,232 ratings — published 1915 — 162 editions
Rate this book
Clear rating
More books by James Wood…

Upcoming Events

No scheduled events. Add an event.

“Literature differs from life in that life is amorphously full of detail, and rarely directs us toward it, wheras literature teaches us to notice. Literature makes us better noticers of life; we get to practice on life itself; which in turn makes us better readers of detail in literature; which in turn makes us better readers of life.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works

“Life, then will, always contain an inevitable surplus, a margin of the gratuitous, a realm in which there is always more than we need: more things, more impressions, more memories, more habits, more words, more happiness, more unhappiness.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works

“When I talk about free indirect style I am really talking about point of view, and when I talk about point of view I am really talking about the perception of detail, and when I talk about detail I'm really talking about character, and when I talk about character I am really talking about the real, which is at the bottom of my inquiries.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works

Topics Mentioning This Author

topics posts views last activity  
Book lovers : Books about writing 10 56 Apr 13, 2010 07:33AM  
readers advisory ...: Books about analyzing books 20 91 Oct 12, 2011 05:15PM  
Challenge: 50 Books: K's 2013 50,000 goal (pages) 29 78 Jan 05, 2013 10:13AM  
The History Book ...: * WHAT IS EVERYBODY READING NOW? 2208 1813 Dec 01, 2014 09:20AM  


Is this you? Let us know. If not, help out and invite James to Goodreads.