Jim Crace pp 33-48 | Cite as

2 Pastoral Concerns in the Fictions of Jim Crace

  • Deborah Lilley


Pastoral’s critical ability to both represent and query the conditions it depicts lies in the divergent meanings underneath its idealised accounts of rural life and between the contrasting spaces of the country and the city. Jim Crace’s fictions use pastoral to both make his imagined landscapes familiar and betray the ambiguities that complicate them. Lilley examines how Crace’s self-conscious use of pastoral allows us to glimpse the frameworks by which characters perceive themselves and their environments. Focusing on Arcadia (1992) and The Pesthouse (2007), Lilley shows how both novels adopt and challenge the pastoral lens to represent and reflect critically upon the blind spots in their characters’ visions and the imperative to account for what lies beyond their fields of view.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Deborah Lilley
    • 1
  1. 1.University of San FranciscoSan FranciscoUSA

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