“Did This Really Happen?”: Amit Chaudhuri’s Acknowledgement of the Autobiographical

Journal of Comparative Literature and Aesthetics, 44 (4):194-203 (2022)
  Copy   BIBTEX


In a recent online lecture, the acclaimed novelist Amit Chaudhuri responded to an accusation that has greeted his fiction since the start of his literary career: that since, as he openly admits, his novels contain people and events that are drawn from his own life, they are better thought of as thinly disguised memoirs—as not really novels at all. In this paper, I discuss this charge by drawing on an account by the philosopher Stephen Mulhall of the work of another distinguished novelist—J.M. Coetzee (more specifically, that work which features the character Elizabeth Costello). In particular, I want to establish the pertinence to Chaudhuri’s lecture of Mulhall’s analogy between aspects of that work and the work of the influential art historian and critic Michael Fried on the history of modernist painting. In so doing, I aim to show that the commitment to the projects of literary modernism and realism which Mulhall sees in Coetzee (and Costello), can also be seen in Chaudhuri’s understanding of the sense in which his novels both are, and are not, autobiographical.



External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Shesher Kobita : Punopather Prostabona.Madhumita Sengupta - 2012 - Pratidhwani the Echo (I):1-11.
Three Horsemen of the New Apocalypse.Nirad C. Chaudhuri - 1997 - Oxford University Press India.
Consciousness in Evolution: Living the Integral Reality of Dr. Haridas Chaudhuri.Anton Grosz - 1995 - Dissertation, California Institute of Integral Studies
Manet's Modernism, or, the Face of Painting in the 1860s.Michael Fried - 1998 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 56 (3):319-320.
Review. [REVIEW]David Carrier - 1983 - Metaphilosophy 14 (1):72–74.
Review. [REVIEW]David Carrier - 1991 - History and Theory 30:368-381.
Crimes and deeds of glory: Michael Fried's modernism.S. Mulhall - 2001 - British Journal of Aesthetics 41 (1):1-23.


Added to PP

100 (#140,820)

6 months
48 (#43,271)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Paul Deb
New College, Oxford

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references