Doubling the Point takes the reader to the center of that vision. These essays and interviews, documenting Coetzee's longtime engagement with his own culture, and with modern culture in general, constitute a literary autobiography. Centrally concerned with the form and content of fiction, Doubling the Point provides insight into the significance of certain writers (particularly modernists such as Kafka, Musil, and Beckett), the value of intellectual movements (from structuralism and structural linguistics on through deconstruction), and the issues of political involvement and responsibility - not only for Coetzee's own work, but for fiction writing in general.
In interviews prefacing each section of the book, Coetzee reflects on the essays to follow and relates them to his life and work. In these interviews editor David Attwell prompts from Coetzee answers of depth and interest.
The result is the story of a fiction writer's intellectual development, and of an intellectual's literary development. It is the story of how one writer has moved through the scholarly and political trends of the last 30 years, carefully assessing their applications and limitations, and through this experience forged for himself a unique and powerful literary voice informed in equal parts by life and learning.