“The contemporary is a country which we all inhabit, but there is little agreement as to its boundaries or its shape. The serious writer is one of its most sensitive interpreters, but criticism is notoriously cautious in offering a response or making a judgment. Accordingly, this […] is an attempt to map the contemporary, to describe its aesthetic and moral topography.”

 

*Malcolm Bradbury and Christopher Bigsby in the General Editor’s Preface in Ziegler (1987: 8).