Henry James, The Figure in the Carpet

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Mhairi Catriona Pooler (University of Aberdeen)

Initially published in Cosmopolis magazine in January and February 1896, Henry James’s “significant fable” (The Art of the Novel, 225) “The Figure in the Carpet” concerns the relationship between an author and his audience and issues of literary interpretation. Published in the same year in the collection Embarrassments, together with “The Next Time” amongst other works, “The Figure in the Carpet” is one of several stories about writers and artists written for the most part in James’s so-called “middle period” of the late 1880s and the 1890s.

Attending a party in the wake of the publication of a review of Hugh Vereker’s new novel, the unnamed narrator encounters the …

1315 words

Citation: Pooler, Mhairi Catriona. "The Figure in the Carpet". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 October 2008 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=867, accessed 07 February 2023.]

867 The Figure in the Carpet 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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