Analysis Of The Book ' The Pursuit Of A Romance '

1711 Words Dec 8th, 2016 7 Pages
The Pursuit to Discover
A.S. Byatt’s Possession: A Romance establishes itself as a postmodern university novel because it centers on the field of research and academia development through a campus setting. Roland Mitchell, the protagonist of the story, is a postdoctoral and literary researcher who is more focused on academia than job prospects, fixing his crumbling relationship with his girlfriend Val, and overall taking part in mandatory obligations such as household contribution, that primarily falls on Val. The audience is introduced to Roland as he studies: “The London Library was Roland 's favourite place. It was shabby but civilised, alive with history but inhabited also by living poets and thinkers who could be found squatting on the slotted metal floors of the stacks, or arguing pleasantly at the turning of the stair” (4). The novel centers on Roland’s discovery of two letters written by fictional Victorian poets, Randolph Henry Ash and Christabel LaMotte. Roland prides and invests the majority of his time to research and decoding these letters, in hopes of pursing a top academic standing in his field. Possession focuses on the themes of history, academic pursuit, and the downfalls of an obsession.
Foremost, in order to classify Possession as university novel, one must first understand what a university novel is. In J.J. William’s terms: “Campus novels" tend to revolve around campus life and present young adult comedies or dramas, most frequently coming-of-age…
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