Shannon Bolithoe : A Writing Life

The Past Made Flesh – Jerome de Groot muses on how authors of historical fiction try to flesh out the bare bones of history

Leave a comment

The Past Made Flesh

By Jerome de Groot

“The historical novel can make the reader understand the bodily and create a kind of corporeal sympathy with the past. It can render something ‘richer, more complete’ in a way that mainstream historical accounts cannot.

One way that historical novels do this is by concentrating on bodies themselves and how they are turned back into skeletons without flesh. Historical detective and thriller fiction allows the author to reveal the workings of society and to highlight various differences between the then and now. It gives an impetus to the understanding of historical difference and allows a character to legitimately investigate the way that a society works. Ways of understanding, defining and punishing criminal mentality, action, and psychology are evidently historically contingent and criminological definitions and practices are hence fundamentally important in understanding pastness …”

Author: SBolithoe

Librarian, author, blogger, presenter, history buff and animal lover.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s