Literary Epiphany in the Novel, 1850–1950
This book studies literary epiphany as a modality of character in the British and American novel. Epiphany presents a significant alternative to traditional models of linking the eye, the mind, and subject formation, an alternative that consistently attracts the language of spirituality, even in anti-supernatural texts. This book analyzes how these epiphanies become "spiritual" and how both character and narrative shape themselves like constellations around such moments. This study begins with James Joyce, 'inventor' of literary epiphany, and Martin Heidegger, who used the ancient Greek concepts behind 'epiphaneia' to re-define the concept of Being. Kim then offers readings of novels by Susan Warner, George Eliot, Edith Wharton, Virginia Woolf, and William Faulkner, each addressing a different form of epiphany.