Chapter

Lost in Translation:

Alison Lumsden

in Walter Scott and the Limits of Language

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print December 2010 | ISBN: 9780748641536
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651610 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641536.003.0016
Lost in Translation:

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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This chapter studies how Scott moves from the question of capturing the ‘ultimate referent’ of the past to the question of how the novelist may overcome the language boundaries caused by the past. It observes that Scott's 1820 novels show a significant shift in terms of the subject matter and the complexity with which he approaches the topic of the relationships between discourse and meaning and their implications for the novelist. It discusses the ways language operates, or even fails to operate, as well as the limitations of its communicative possibilities. This chapter concludes that Scott's The Fortunes of Nigel offers the greatest linguistic challenge to readers due to the languages it uses.

Keywords: ultimate referent; language; boundaries; subject matter; discourse and meaning; communicative possibilities; linguistic challenge

Chapter.  13774 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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