Hype: Bestsellers and Literary Culture

ISBN 13: 9789187675065

Hype: Bestsellers and Literary Culture

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9789187675065: Hype: Bestsellers and Literary Culture

In the world of books and literature, “hype” is associated with bestsellerism—the books that sell the most, are read by vast numbers, and constantly talked about in media and staff rooms. Often, it is the success in itself that generates an interest because popularity begets popularity. Quite often though, a hyped bestseller is met with a skeptic criticism of poor language, a badly constructed plot, a predictable story line, or all three. The bestseller phenomenon is sometimes conceived as a threat against “real” literature. Research into the creation, reception, and meaning of bestsellers is utterly scarce and Hype: Bestsellers and Literary Culture is an important contribution to the understanding of the literature read by the masses. Popular literature plays an important role in the lives of millions of readers, offering entertainment, social commentary, and alternate perspectives on everyday life. This volume brings together such diverse issues as the creation of hype, the role and the meaning of the author in the present-day media landscape, changes in the book trade, and the relationship between bestsellers and research into them. Further articles give an historical overview on postapocalyptic stories, desert romances and the role of the authors. This book offers new knowledge on a subject that is increasingly popular within university curricula. Although the anthology is a work of academic research the texts are of equal interest to general readers.

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About the Author:

Jon Helgason is an editor of the dictionary from the Swedish Academy and a researcher in comparative literature at Lund University. He is a coeditor of Women’s Language: An Analysis of Style and Expression in Letters Before 1800. Sara Kärrholm is associate professor in literature and publishing studies at Lund University, Sweden. Her research has mainly been performed within literary studies with an interdisciplinary approach concerning popular literature, specifically crime fiction, and children’s literature. Ann Steiner is a lecturer in literary studies and publishing studies at Lund University in Sweden. Her research focuses mainly on contemporary book trade as well as the relationship between literature and digital technology. She is a coeditor of Interdisciplinary Approaches to Twilight.

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