Sie sind hier: FRIAS Fellows Fellows 2016/2017 Prof. Brian E. Richardson

Prof. Brian E. Richardson

University of Maryland
Modern Fiction and Narrative Theory
External Senior Fellow (Marie S. Curie FCFP)
May - July 2017

Raum 02 014
Tel. +49 (0)761 203 97392
Fax +49 (0)761 203 97451


Richardson is the author of over 140 publications, including four books (one co-authored), two of which have been awarded honors; editor or co-editor of seven collections of essays on modernism and narrative theory; author of more than 80 scholarly articles and over 35 shorter works. His work has been or is being translated into French, German, Russian, Chinese, Polish, Danish, and Serbian. His books include Unlikely Stories: Causality and the Nature of Modern Narrative (1997); Unnatural Voices: Extreme Narration in Modern and Contemporary Fiction (2006, Perkins Prize winner for the year’s best book in narrative studies); Narrative Theory: Critical Concepts and Current Debates (conceived by Richardson and co-authored with David Herman, James Phelan, Peter Rabinowitz, and Robyn Warhol, 2012), selected by Choice as an Outstanding Academic Title of 2012; and Unnatural Narrative: Theory, History, and Practice, May 2015.
He has edited or co-edited three anthologies, Narrative Dynamics: Essays on Time, Plot, Closure, and Frames (2002); Narrative Beginnings: Theories and Practices (2009); A Poetics of Unnatural Narratives (with Jan Alber and Henrik Skov Nielsen, 2013; paper 2015). He has guest-edited several special issues of scholarly journals: *Style* on Concepts of Narrative (34.2, 2000) and on The Implied Author (44.1, 2011), an issue of Conradiana on Conrad and the Reader (35.1, 2003), and “Narrative Theory and Experimental Fiction” in Frontiers of Narrative (winter, 2018). He is a contributing co-editor of the Dictionary of Unnatural Narrative Theory.

Publikationen (Auswahl)

  • The Implied Author: Back From the Grave or Simply Dead Again?@ Style 44.1 (2011) 1-10.

  • The Trope of the Book in the Jungle: Colonial and Postcolonial Avatars,@ The Conradian 36.1 (Spring 2011) 1-13.

  • U. S. Ethnic and Postcolonial Fiction: Toward a Collectivist Poetics,@ Analyzing World Fiction: New Horizons in Narrative Theory, edited by Frederick Aldama, University of Texas Press (2011) 3-16.

  • Transtextual Characters,@ Characters in Fictional Worlds: Understanding Imaginary Beings in Literature, Film, and Other Media, edited by Jens Eder, Fotis Jannidis, and Ralf Schneider. Berlin: de Gruyter, 2010, 527-41.

  • Singular Text, Multiple Implied Readers,@ Style 41.3 (2007) 257-72.

FRIAS Projekt

Narrative Beginnings, Middles, Endings, and Beyond: Theorizing Plot after Postmodernism

Despite the fact that story and plot are the most basic aspects of narrative, there is a major gap in narrative theory concerning story and plot: the nature of stories that transcend or elude the conventions of realism. Such narratives, which have been around since Aristophanes, are increasingly prominent since the advent of postmodernism, new avant-garde works, and many digital narratives. The study of narrative thus has an increasingly prominent gap that needs to be identified, analyzed, and theorized as traditional and more recent concepts of story and plot (Peter Brooks, James Phelan, Patrick Colm Hogan, even Marie-Laure Ryan) need to be integrated with emerging but still imperfectly assimilated scholarship and analysis of the more radical, antimimetic works. This study seeks to examine and explain how such works play with or problematize narrative beginnings, how they create alternative trajectories and different principles of sequencing (e.g., alphabetical or musical orderings), how they re-order time (including the construction of contradictory chronologies), and play with or even challenge the identity of narrative itself--what are the boundaries of narrative, what is the definition of narrative, and what is a single narrative. This study is also engaged with cognitive theory and metahistory to help identify identify distinctively fictional practices and to help determine how they are employed, developed and processed.