This new guide to the main developments in the history of British and Irish Literature uniquely charts some of the main features of literary language development and highlights key language topics. Clearly structured and highly readable, unlike traditional histories of literature it spans over a thousand years of literary history from AD 600 to the present day. It emphasizes the growth of literary writing, its traditions, conventions and changing characteristics, and includes literature from the margins, both geographical and cultural. Key features of the book are: * an up-to-date guide to the major periods of literature in English in Britain and Ireland * extensive coverage of post-1945 literature * language notes spanning AD 600 to the present * extensive quotations from poetry, prose and drama * a timeline of the important historical and political events This will be essential reading for all students of English literature and language.

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