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A Sentimental Journey and Other Writings (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – August 21, 2003

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) was an English novelist and an Anglican clergyman. Tim Parnell is a Lecturer in English, Goldsmith's College, University of London. Ian Jack is a Professor Emeritus of English, University of Cambridge.

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Product Details

  • Series: Oxford World's Classics
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (August 21, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192839969
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192839961
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 0.6 x 5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,659,224 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Michael Fridman on May 6, 2004
Format: Paperback
Most readers are familiar with Sterne for his more famous Tristram Shandy. This volume contains some of his other works. Personally, I found Tristram to be of a much higher caliber, mainly because it is a complete epic which covers so many of Sterne's theories and rantings. So, if you're encountering Sterne for the first time, go to Tristram. For fans wanting some more writings, this is a good collection.
The first section is A Sentimental Journey. We already have a part of a travelogue of Tristram in his self-titled work. In this one, it is the marvellous personage Yorick that undergoes the journey through Italy and France. The book in in the form of a ranty journal that supposedly draws from Sterne's own travels. He intended to publish 4 volumes but wrote 2 before other pursuits and eventually death caught up with him. In the work, his sentimentalism relaly comes through as he goes through various amusing incidents, tragic stories and semi-amorous adventures. All this is done with a certain dignity. The 2nd volume ends in a scene of planned abruption which I found amusing enough to justify the rest of the book.
I didn't read the next two pieces, the first one because I didn't want to pry into his private life and the second because it was hard to follow the context. The pieces are Journal to Eliza - a personal correspondence, and A Political Romance - his first published work which is a satire on a scandal which, with the proper background should be interesting.
The last section is a selection from the Sermons of Yorick, where the eccentric Shandean minister makes another appearance providing Sterne with an opportunity to make theological statements. These were very interesting, giving light to another side of Sterne.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By S. Pactor VINE VOICE on May 16, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Sterne is best known for his Rabelaisian tour-de-force Tristam Shandy, a novel which I had the "pleasure" to struggle through for the best part of a year back in 2008. Shandy is a sprawling, discursive comic masterpiece which has more in common with novels of the 20th century then those which followed it in the 19th. But Sterne also wrote another, minor, classic, A Sentimental Journey. First published in 1768, six months before the author's death, A Sentimental Journey was one of the first "novels of sentiment and sensibility" a genre which rose and fell by the turn of the 19th century, but one which would have a decisive impact on the Brontean/Austen wave of fiction which would define the 19th century.
Sterne's A Sentimental Journey was published three years before Henry MacKenzie's The Man of Feeling. Man of Feeling was in instant hit, selling out within two months and being reprinted six time in the following decade. Both novels echo the on-going debate in 18th century about the impact of modernity on the nature of man. As G.J. Barker-Benfield persuasively argued in his book, The Culture of Sensibility, "popular novels written by men in the 1760s and 1770s were preoccupied with the meanings of sensibility for manhood...and the ambiguity we now tend to read into the novels of Laurence Stern or Mackenzie reflects this contemporary ambivalence."
Regardless of how one interprets the underlying debate OR the role of the "novels of sentiment" in the 18th century, it's clear that these tales had an audience. Of course, in light of the rise of female novelists in the 19th century, I am left wondering who was buying all the copies of MacKenzie's The Man of Feeling. Was it men, interested in getting a fix on their identity in a rapidly changing world?
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By dave jones on December 19, 2014
Format: Paperback
tristam shandy was my tarot deck during work furlough... found it in the house's wreck room... parole ... love you sterne... even tho they say u rippt off burton... sterne you were with me kept me out of more trouble thanks... right now I'm listening to Britney... she reminds me of u... intellectually that is,,, (ahh) she's so.... FINE (in the mind)
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