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Locating Life StoriesBeyond East-West Binaries in (Auto)Biographical Studies$
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Maureen Perkins

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780824837303

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824837303.001.0001

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Martin Amis, Mimetic Contracts, and Life Writing Pacts: A Story about 9/11

Martin Amis, Mimetic Contracts, and Life Writing Pacts: A Story about 9/11

(p.97) Martin Amis, Mimetic Contracts, and Life Writing Pacts: A Story about 9/11
Locating Life Stories

Craig Howes

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter studies Martin Amis' remark that there is a yawning gap, which separates writers' lives from their literary works. He claims that “the life doesn't shape the writing, nor do the moral lineaments of the life contaminate the work. They are separate things.” Denying this claim is the biography's crime since biographers are in business to say the two are “the same thing, or that they overlap.” He further states that “being more interested in the writer than the writing is just eternal human vulgarity.” These forms of contempt for literary biography had placed him firmly in the critical tradition that warned about the intentional fallacy.

Keywords:   Martin Amis, literary works, biography, biographers, critical tradition

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