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Articol publicat in: Cultura, Educatie


Mirela Roznoveanu. CIVILIZATIA ROMANULUI: De laRamayana la Don Quijote ; The Civilization of the Novel: A History of Fiction Writing from Ramayana to Don Quixote . Bucharest: Editura Cartex (CartexPublishing House, cartex2000r@yahoo.com) 2008, 694 pp., $ 55.00, ISBN 978-973-88670-79.
This is an enlarged, revised and updated text of a previous edition (vol. I,1983; vol. II, 1991), already in the holdings of several American and Canadian universities(Harvard, Yale , Toronto, McGill, etc.), and alsoused as a textbook in several Romanian universities. It is a study dealing with the epic architectures (novels, short stories) developed by various civilizations over the last five millennia. Focus is on the on the novel-like aesthetic works overlooked in western exegeses and on those which have never been developed or experimented within western culture. We find different sets of values, a new kind of theoretical and critical discourse accommodating epic architectures developed in practically all civilizations and cultural periods: Vedic, Sumerian, Persian, ancient Egyptian, old Hebrews, classical Greek and Roman, down to European during Middle Ages, and further on to the early modernity of the Renaissance . A compelling piece of solid scholarship, based on a wealth of excellent bibliographic sources (mostly in English, but also in French, Spanish, Italian, German), accompanied by over 1,000 footnotes, extensive index, and abstracts in English, French, and German, this volume is certainly a valuable addition to the study of comparative literatures around the world. The book received the 2008 Award of the Romanian Society of Comparative Literature.The Romanian born author isa novelist, literary critic, poet , and faculty member of the New YorkUniversity School of Law.

Vladimir F. Wertsman is the Chair of the Publishing and Multicultural Materials Committee of the Ethnic Materials and Information Exchange Round Table of the American Library Association.

Reviewed for Multicultural Review 2010.

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