073. Structuring Romance: The Secular Scripture pt 1 with Dr. Angela Toscano

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Dr. Angela Toscano, a romance scholar, writer, and researcher joins Shelf Love to discuss literary critic Northrop Frye's 1976 book The Secular Scripture: A study of the structure of romance. Although it's 44 years old and isn't only about romance novels, it has a lot to say that's relevant to the popular romance genre in the year 2020 - and Angela and I call on many examples from more recent books you may be familiar with as well as other examples from pop culture.

For example, how is the structure of romance fundamentally different from that of literary, epic works? Why is "mere entertainment" so derided by the academy and what's wrong with the phony infinite? What's the difference between a maze with no plan and a maze, not without a plan? How does romance focus on the polarity between the idyllic world we want and the subterranean world we don't want, but not the life we have? And how does the dog always know?

This is part 1 of our conversation. Part 2: out 12/26/20.

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Show Notes:

Shelf Love:

Guest: Dr. Angela Toscano

Twitter | Website | JPRS Notes & Queries

Books Discussed:

The Secular Scripture by Northrop Frye

The Hathaways by Lisa Kleypas

Romancelandia Holiday Fairies Gift Drive (2020)

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