Enter a term to search the site
Search tips | Log in
Resources Job List publications bookstore style convention governance membership

Add to Cart
Approaches to Teaching Sterne's Tristram Shandy

Editor(s): Melvyn New

Pages: x & 174 pp.
Published: 1989
ISBN: 9780873525169 (paperback)
ISBN: 9780873525152 (hardcover)

"Most of the contributors, in their teaching, seek to make students better readers and to encourage the development of scholarly habits such as using library resources to explore the novel's many allusions. It is tempting to try to imagine oneself in one of their classes and to envisage one's reactions. Most would provide stimulating experiences; many could stir enjoyment in their more receptive students."
Eighteenth-Century Fiction

Laurence Sterne never would have imagined, according to the volume editor Melvyn New, "that The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy would two hundred years later be read in classrooms and endorsed by professorial types." Yet this formidable and great novel is indeed "swimming down the gutter of time," as Sterne prayed it would. The nineteen essays here, written by experienced "professorial types" who teach at a variety of levels, prove that Sterne is an author whose comic wit must be taken seriously and whose novel students can learn to appreciate and enjoy.

This volume, like others in the MLA's Approaches to Teaching World Literature series, is divided into two parts. The first part, "Materials," reviews editions of Tristram Shandy, other primary works, biographical resources, background studies, and critical commentary. In the second part, "Approaches," teachers--including both nonspecialists and well-known Sterne scholars--suggest strategies for presenting the novel in courses ranging from English literature surveys (where Tristram Shandy might be taught) to seminars on the eighteenth-century novel (where Sterne's work must be taught).

Table of Contents

Approaches to Teaching Sterne's Tristram Shandy

Melvyn New


Other Primary Materials

Secondary Materials
General Studies
Works about Sterne and Tristram Shandy



Tristram Shandy: Text

A South West Passage to the Intellectual World
Arthur H. Cash

Understanding Tristram Shandy
William Bowman Piper

Structure as a Starting Point
Robert D. Spector

Tristram Shandy and the Spatial Imagination
Ira Konigsberg

Getting into the Talk: Tristram Shandy through Conversation
Leland E. Warren

"How could you, Madam, be so inattentive?": Tristram's Relationship with the Reader
Betty Rizzo

Tristram Shandy: Contexts

Sterne's Paradoxical Coherence: Some Principles of Unity in Tristram Shandy
William R. Siebenschuh

Toby Shandy: Sentiment and the Soldier
Susan Staves

Sterne and His Early Critics: The Outsider
Sophia B. Blaydes

Stories That Should Be True? Locke, Sterne, and Tristram Shandy
Brian McCrea

Winding Up the Clock: Introducing Tristram Shandy
Michael Raymond

Pragmatism versus Dogmatism: The Ideology of Tristram Shandy
Donald Greene

Tristram Shandy: Text con Texts

The Sorrows and Confessions of a Cross-Eyed "Female-Reader" of Sterne
Elizabeth W. Harries

"Fire, Water, Women, Wind": Tristram Shandy in the Classroom
Leigh Ehlers Telotte

Tristram Shandy and the Age That Begot Him
Elizabeth Kraft

Tristram Shandy in a Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Course: Satire or Soap?
Deborah D. Rogers

Satirical Form and Realistic Fiction in Tristram Shandy
Maximillian E. Novak

Multistability and Method in Tristram Shandy
Stephen C. Behrendt

History and Theory, Literature and Criticism: The Two Knobs of Teaching Tristram Shandy
Joel Weinsheimer

Works Cited


Add to Cart


Search Bookstore

View Cart

Online Payment Processing
© 2015 Modern Language Association. Last updated 02/24/2015.