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'The best book on the subject I've read. Quite brilliant' Tony Jordan, creator/writer, Life on Mars, Hustle We all love stories. But why do we tell them? And why do all stories function in an eerily similar way? John Yorke, creator of the BBC Writers' Academy, has brought a vast array of drama to British screens. Here he takes us on a journey to the heart of storytelling, revealing that there truly is a unifying shape to narrative forms - one that echoes the fairytale journey into the woods and, like any great art, comes from deep within. From ancient myths to big-budget blockbusters, he gets to the root of the stories that are all around us, every day. 'Marvellous' Julian Fellowes 'Terrifyingly clever ... Packed with intelligent argument' Evening Standard 'The most important book about scriptwriting since William Goldman's Adventures in the Screen Trade' Peter Bowker, writer, Blackpool, Occupation, Eric and Ernie
What are America's best-loved novels? PBS will launch The Great American Read series with a 2-hour special in May 2018 revealing America's 100 best-loved novels, determined by a rigorous national survey. Subsequent episodes, featured by a yet-to-be-named A-list host, will air in September and October. Celebrities and everyday Americans will champion their favorite novel and in the finale, America's #1 best-loved novel will be revealed. The Great American Read: The Book of Books will present all 100 novels with fascinating information about each book, author profiles, a snapshot of the novel's social relevance, film or television adaptations, other books and writings by the author, and little-known facts. Also included are themed articles about banned books, the most influential book illustrators, reading recommendations, the best first-lines in literature, and more. Beautifully designed with rare images of the original manuscripts, first-edition covers, rejection letters, and other ephemera, The Great American Read: The Book of Books is a must-have book for all booklovers.
Laurence Coupe offers students a comprehensive overview of the development of myth, showing how mythic themes, structures and symbols persist in literature and entertainment today. This introductory volume: illustrates the relation between myth, culture and literature with discussions of poetry, fiction, film and popular song explores uses made of the term `myth' within the fields of literary criticism, anthropology, cultural studies, feminism, Marxism and psychoanalysis discusses the association between modernism, postmodernism, myth and history familiarizes the reader with themes such as the dying god, the quest for the Grail, the relation between `chaos' and `cosmos', and the vision of the end of time demonstrates the growing importance of the green dimension of myth. Fully updated and revised in this new edition, Myth is both a concise introduction and a useful tool to students first approaching the topic, while also a valuable contribution to the study of myth.
This Norton Critical Edition includes: * The Second Quarto text, edited by Robert S. Miola and accompanied by his footnotes, headnotes, and introductory materials. * Eighteen illustrations from 1604 to 2008, three of them new to the Second Edition. * The Actors' Gallery, presenting actors-from Sarah Bernhardt and Ellen Terry to Kenneth Branagh and David Tennant, two of them new to the Second Edition-reflecting on their roles in major productions of Hamlet. * Seventeen critical interpretations, representing a wide range of historical and scholarly commentary. * Afterlives, featuring fifteen reflections on Hamlet-from David Garrick and Mark Twain to Margaret Atwood and Jawad al-Assadi. * A Bibliography of print and online resources. About the Series Read by more than 12 million students over fifty-five years, Norton Critical Editions set the standard for apparatus that is right for undergraduate readers. The three-part format-annotated text, contexts, and criticism-helps students to better understand, analyze, and appreciate the literature, while opening a wide range of teaching possibilities for instructors. Whether in print or in digital format, Norton Critical Editions provide all the resources students need.
"Uses of Literature" bridges the gap between literary theory and
common-sense beliefs about why we read literature.
The only textbook that completely covers OxfordAQA International AS & A Level English Literature (9675), for first teaching in September 2017. Written by experienced authors who have contributed to the specification, the international approach develops reading, writing and critical thinking skills, supporting exam success and providing an excellent grounding for further study at university. This textbook ensures students are fully prepared for their exams with full support and guidance on the variety of assessment styles used in the specification, including passage-based questions, unseen material, and open and closed book approaches. Packed with examples of traditional and contemporary prose, drama and poetry, plus set and unseen texts, this textbook develops the key skills required to critically analyse, evaluate and respond to different types of literature.
In Literary Partnerships and the Marketplace, David Dowling examines an often-overlooked aspect of the history of publishing -- relationships, of both a business and a personal nature. The book focuses on several intriguing duos of the nineteenth century and explores the economics of literary partnerships between author/publisher, student/mentor, husband/wife, and parent/child.
These literary companions range from Emerson's promotion of Thoreau -- a relationship fraught with pitfalls and misjudgments -- to "Davis, Inc.," the seamless joining of the literary and legal minds of Rebecca Harding Davis and her husband, L. Clarke Davis.
Dowling also considers and analyzes the teams of Washington Irving and his publisher, John Murray; Herman Melville and his editor, Evert Duyckinck; E. D. E. N. Southworth and Robert Bonner, the publisher who serialized her sentimental novels; Fanny Fern both with her brother/publisher, Nathaniel Parker Willis, and with Robert Bonner, the latter a more successful pairing; and the famous fraternal relationship between Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein.
Throughout, Dowling demonstrates the intrinsic irony of authors projecting their labors of the mind as autonomous even as they relied heavily on their "literary partners" to aid them in navigating the business side of writing.
The decisive contribution of the exile generation of the 1930s and '40s to German Studies in the United States is well known. The present volume carries the story forward to the next generation(s), giving voice to scholars from the US and overseas, many of them mentored by the exile generation. The exiles knew vividly the value of the Humanities; the following generations, though spared the experience of historical catastrophe, have found formidable challenges in building and maintaining the field in a time increasingly dismissive of that value. The scholar-contributors to this volume, prominent members of the profession, share their experiences of finding their way in the field and helping to develop it to its present state as well as their thoughts on its present challenges, including the question of the role of literature and of interdisciplinarity, pluralism, and diversity. Of particular interest is the role of transatlantic dialogue. Contributors: Leslie A. Adelson, Hans Adler, Russell A. Berman, Jane K. Brown, Walter Hinderer, Robert C. Holub, Leroy Hopkins, Andreas Huyssen, Claire Kramsch, Wilhelm Krull, Paul Michael Lutzeler, Mark W. Roche, Judith Ryan, Azade Seyhan, Lynne Tatlock, Liliane Weissberg. Paul Michael Lutzeler is Rosa May Distinguished University Professor in the Humanities at Washington University, St. Louis. Peter Hoeyng is Associate Professor of German at Emory University.
Fantasy has been an important and much-loved part of children's literature for hundreds of years, yet relatively little has been written about it. Children's Fantasy Literature traces the development of the tradition of the children's fantastic - fictions specifically written for children and fictions appropriated by them - from the sixteenth to the twenty-first century, examining the work of Lewis Carroll, L. Frank Baum, C. S. Lewis, Roald Dahl, J. K. Rowling and others from across the English-speaking world. The volume considers changing views on both the nature of the child and on the appropriateness of fantasy for the child reader, the role of children's fantasy literature in helping to develop the imagination, and its complex interactions with issues of class, politics and gender. The text analyses hundreds of works of fiction, placing each in its appropriate context within the tradition of fantasy literature.
One of the most critically acclaimed yet least recognized contemporary writers, African American author John Edgar Wideman creates work often described as difficult, even unfathomable. In Writing Blackness, James Coleman examines Wideman's prolific body of work with the goal of making his often elusive imagery and dense style more accessible and thus broadening his readership.
More so than for most writers, Coleman shows, Wideman's life has affected his writing. Born in 1941, Wideman grew up in a Pittsburgh suburb where he attended an integrated high school, starred on the basketball team, and was senior class president and valedictorian. At the University of Pennsylvania he studied creative writing and became an all--Ivy League basketball player. Winning a Rhodes scholarship, he studied at Oxford, after which he returned to Penn and became its first black tenured professor. Wideman published his first novel, A Glance Away, at age twenty-six and by 1973 had published two more works of fiction.
But for all this success, something began to wear on him. In 1973, his grandmother died, and after listening to family stories when he traveled home for the funeral, Wideman began to change his world view. Between 1973 and 1981 Wideman published nothing and immersed himself in African American culture, reading widely and -- even more important -- moving much closer to his family. Since 1981, Wideman has refocused his life and writing on blackness and published twelve experimental works, all very different from his earlier books.
Coleman examines nearly all of Wideman's work, from A Glance Away (1967) to Fanon (2008). He shows how Wideman has developed a unique style that combines elements of fiction, biography, memoir, history, legend, folklore, waking life, and dream in innovative ways in an effort to grasp the meaning of blackness -- an effort that makes his writing challenging but that holds more than ample rewards for the perceptive reader.
In Writing Blackness, Coleman demonstrates why Wideman ranks among the best of contemporary American writers.
In Modernist Women Writers and War, Julie Goodspeed-Chadwick examines important avant-garde writings by three American women authors and shows that during World Wars I and II a new kind of war literature emerged -- one in which feminist investigation of war and trauma effectively counters the paradigmatic war experience long narrated by men.
In the past, Goodspeed-Chadwick explains, scholars have not considered writings by women as part of war literature. They have limited "war writing" to works by men, such as William Butler Yeats's poem "An Irish Airman Foresees His Death" (1919), which relies on a male perspective: a pilot contemplates his forthcoming flight, his duty to his country, and his life in combat. But works by Djuna Barnes, H.D., and Gertrude Stein set in wartime reveal experiences and views of war markedly different from those of male writers. They write women and their bodies into their texts, thus creating space for female war writing, insisting on female presence in wartime, and, perhaps most significantly, critiquing war and patriarchal politics, often in devastating fashion.
Goodspeed-Chadwick begins with Barnes, who in her surrealist novel Nightwood (1936) emphasizes the actual perversity of war by placing it in contrast to the purported perverse and deviant behavior of her main characters. In her epic poem Trilogy (1944--1946), H.D. validates female suffering and projects a feminist, spiritual worldview that fosters healing from the ravages of war. Stein, for her part, in her experimental novel Mrs. Reynolds (1952) and her long love poem Lifting Belly (1953), captures her experience of the everyday reality of war on the home front, within the domestic economy of her household.
In these works, the female body stands as the primary textual marker or symbol of female identity -- an insistence on women's presence in both the text and in the world outside the book. The strategies employed by Barnes, H.D., and Stein in these texts serve to produce a new kind of writing, Goodspeed-Chadwick reveals, one that ineluctably constructs a female identity within, and authorship of, the war narrative.
Emory University professor Sally Wolff has carried on a fifty-year tradition of leading students on expeditions to "Faulkner country" in and around Oxford, Mississippi. Not long ago, she decided to invite alumni on one of these field trips. One response to the invitation surprised her: "I can't go on the trip. But I knew William Faulkner." They were the words of Dr. Edgar Wiggin Francisco III, and in talking with Wolff he revealed that as a child in the 1930s and 1940s he did indeed know Faulkner quite well. His father and Faulkner maintained a close friendship for many years, going back to their shared childhood, but the fact of their friendship has been unrecognized because the two men saw much less of each other after the early years of their marriages. In Ledgers of History, Wolff recounts her conversations with Dr. Francisco -- known to Faulkner as "Little Eddie" -- and reveals startling sources of inspiration for Faulkner's most famous works.
Dr. Francisco grew up at McCarroll Place, his family's ancestral home in Holly Springs, Mississippi, thirty miles north of Oxford. In the conversations with Wolff, he recalls that as a boy he would sit and listen as his father and Faulkner sat on the gallery and talked about whatever came to mind. Francisco frequently told stories to Faulkner, many of them oft-repeated, about his family and community, which dated to antebellum times. Some of these stories, Wolff shows, found their way into Faulkner's fiction.
Faulkner also displayed an absorbing interest in a seven-volume diary kept by Dr. Francisco's great-great-grandfather Francis Terry Leak, who owned extensive plantation lands in northern Mississippi before the Civil War. Some parts of the diary recount incidents in Leak's life, but most of the diary concerns business transactions, including the buying and selling of slaves and the building of a plantation home. During his visits over the course of decades, Francisco recalls, Faulkner spent many hours poring over these volumes, often taking notes. Wolff has discovered that Faulkner apparently drew some of the most important material in several of his greatest works, including Absalom, Absalom and Go Down, Moses, at least in part from the diary.
Through Dr. Francisco's vivid childhood recollections, Ledgers of History offers a compelling portrait of the future Nobel Laureate near the midpoint of his legendary career and also charts a significant discovery that will inevitably lead to revisions in historical and critical scholarship on Faulkner and his writings.
The opening decades of the twenty-first century are distinguished by a newly framed and regenerated outlook of Jewish American literary studies. This volume introduces readers to the new perspectives, new approaches, and widening of interpretive possibilities in Jewish American literature accompanied by the changes of the new millennium. Now that we are over a decade into a new century, the field of Jewish American literary studies has begun to reshape itself in response to a 'new diaspora', a newly defined sense not only of Jewish American literature, but of America, an expansion of new genres, new voices, and new platforms of expression. This book re-evaluates questions of race, feminism, gender, sexuality, orthodoxy, assimilation, identity politics, and historical alienation that shape Jewish American literary studies. Several chapters show the influence of other cultures on the field such as Iranian-American-Jewish writing, Israeli-American, and Latin American literary expression, as well as the impact of Russian emigres.
In this captivating work, Carmen Trammell Skaggs examines the discourse of opera -- both the art form and the social institution -- in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century American literature. Through the lens of opera, she maintains, major American writers -- including Walt Whitman, Edgar Allan Poe, Louisa May Alcott, Kate Chopin, Willa Cather, Henry James, and Edith Wharton -- captured the transformations of a rapidly changing American literary landscape. Although they turned to opera for different reasons, they all saw a twofold function in the art form: a means of expressing a private aesthetic experience and a space in which to perform highly ritualized social functions.
Skaggs opens with an exploration of Whitman, who believed that the opera singer infuses ordinary speech with an element of the divine. Through his poetry, he sought to transform these sacred intonations into vehicles of an artistic transcendence that could be experienced by his audience. Skaggs then turns to Poe and Alcott, who frequently imitated the excesses of opera in their fiction, flamboyantly enjoying the element of the absurd. Using opera as a setting in their work allowed them to explore the fallibility of human sensibility, especially our susceptibility to deception.
Chopin and Cather, Skaggs shows, empowered their heroines with a voice, a medium for artistic transcendence, but they were also influenced by the growing popularity of Wagnerian opera -- and of the idea that only through a sublimation of life can transfiguration of the soul occur. The true artist, they believed, inevitably lived a solitary life, sacrificing all for art. In the diva, for instance, Cather saw the ideal embodiment of the female artist. On the other hand, James and Wharton, Skaggs explains, recognized the opera box as the ideal setting for social considerations of class, codes, and customs in many of their stories and novels.
Past literary critics have employed musical terminology to evoke what opera historian Herbert Lindenberger describes as a "nonverbal dimension beyond what we ordinarily take to be the realm of literature," but many of these same scholars warily embraced an operatic approach. After all, the "operatic" often suggests artificiality and extravagance -- qualities usually seen as negative in writing. Despite the undisputed canonical status of many of the works Skaggs explores, at least a few of them might also be described in similarly operatic (and disparaging) terms. The critical discourse of opera, however, offers an ideal vehicle for opening these texts in a new way.
Unveiling a heretofore seldom-noticed connection between the rise of opera in America and the flowering of American literature, Skaggs's noteworthy study will inform and enlighten literary scholars, musicologists, and lovers of both opera and literature.
The small town has become a national icon that circulates widely in literature, culture, and politics as an authentic American space and community. Yet there are surprisingly few critical studies that analyze the small town's centrality to the United States' identity and imagination. In Main Street and Empire, Ryan Poll addresses this need, arguing that the small town, as evoked by the image of "Main Street," is not a relic of the past but rather a metaphorical screen upon which America's "everyday" stories and subjects are projected on both a national and global scale. Bringing together a broad selection of texts-from Thornton Wilder's Our Town, Grace Metalious's Peyton Place, and Peter Weir's The Truman Show to the speeches of William McKinley, Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin, and Barack Obama-Poll examines how the small town is used to imagine and reproduce the nation throughout the twentieth and into the twenty-first century. He contends that the dominant small town, despite its innocent, nostalgic appearance, is central to the development of the U.S. empire and global capitalism.
Despite nearly universal critical acclaim for Robert Penn Warren's later poetry, much about this large body of work remains unexplored, especially the psychological sources of these poems' remarkable energy. In this groundbreaking work, Warren scholar Joseph R. Millichap takes advantage of current research on developmental psychology, gerontology, and end-of-life studies to offer provocative new readings of Warren's later poems, which he defines as those published after Audubon: A Vision (1969). In these often intricate poems, Millichap sees something like an autobiographical epic focused on the process of aging, the inevitability of death, and the possibility of transcendence. Thus Warren's later poetry reviews an individual life seen whole, contemplates mortality and dissolution, and aspires to the literary sublime.
Millichap locates the beginning of Warren's late period in the extraordinary collection Or Else: Poem/Poems 1968--1974, basing his contention on the book's complex, indeed obsessive sequencing of new, previously published, and previously collected poems unified by themes of time, memory, age, and death. Millichap offers innovative readings of Or Else and Warren's five other late gatherings of poems -- Can I See Arcturus from Where I Stand?: Poems 1975; Now and Then: Poems 1976--1978, winner of the Pulitzer Prize; Being Here: Poetry 1977--1980; Rumor Verified: Poems 1979--1980; and Altitudes and Extensions 1980--1984.
Among the autobiographical elements Millichap brings into his careful readings are Warren's loneliness in these later years, especially after the deaths of family members and friends; his alternating feelings of personal satisfaction and emptiness toward his literary achievements; and his sense of the power, and at times the impotence, of memory. Millichap's analysis explores how Warren often returned to images and themes of his earlier poems, especially those involving youth and midlife, with the new perspective given by advancing age and time's passage. Millichap also relates Warren's work to that of other poets who have dealt profoundly with memory and age, including Robert Frost, T. S. Eliot, Thomas Hardy, and, at times, John Milton, William Wordsworth, and the whole English and American nineteenth-century Romantic tradition.
An epilogue traces Warren's changing reputation as a poet from the publication of his last volume in 1985 through his death in 1989 and the centennial of his birth in 2005, concluding persuasively that the finest of all of Warren's literary efforts can be found in his later poetry, concerned as it is with the work of aging and the quest for transcendence.
For well over a century, academic disciplines have studied human behavior using quantitative information. Until recently, however, the humanities have remained largely immune to the use of data-or vigorously resisted it. Thanks to new developments in computer science and natural language processing, literary scholars have embraced the quantitative study of literary works and have helped make Digital Humanities a rapidly growing field. But these developments raise a fundamental, and as yet unanswered question: what is the meaning of literary quantity? In Enumerations, Andrew Piper answers that question across a variety of domains fundamental to the study of literature. He focuses on the elementary particles of literature, from the role of punctuation in poetry, the matter of plot in novels, the study of topoi, and the behavior of characters, to the nature of fictional language and the shape of a poet's career. How does quantity affect our understanding of these categories? What happens when we look at 3,388,230 punctuation marks, 1.4 billion words, or 650,000 fictional characters? Does this change how we think about poetry, the novel, fictionality, character, the commonplace, or the writer's career? In the course of answering such questions, Piper introduces readers to the analytical building blocks of computational text analysis and brings them to bear on fundamental concerns of literary scholarship. This book will be essential reading for anyone interested in Digital Humanities and the future of literary study.
From antebellum times, Louisiana's unique multipartite society included a legal and social space for intermediary racial groups such as Acadians, Creoles, and Creoles of Color. In Becoming Cajun, Becoming American, Maria Hebert-Leiter explores how American writers have portrayed Acadian culture over the past 150 years. Combining a study of Acadian literary history with an examination of Acadian ethnic history in light of recent social theories, she offers insight into the Americanization process experienced by Acadians -- who over time came to be known as Cajuns -- during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Hebert-Leiter examines the entire history of the Acadian, or Cajun, in American literature, beginning with Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem Evangeline and the writings of George Washington Cable, including his novel Bonaventure. The cultural complexity of Acadian and Creole identities led many writers to rely on stereotypes in Acadian characters, but as Hebert-Leiter shows, the ambiguity of Louisiana's class and racial divisions also allowed writers to address complex and controversial -- and sometimes taboo -- subjects. She emphasizes the fiction of Kate Chopin, whose short stories contain Acadian characters accepted as white Americans during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Representations of the Acadian in literature reflect the Acadians' path towards assimilation, as they celebrated their differences while still adopting an all-American notion of self. In twentieth-century writing, Acadian figures came to be more often called Cajun, and increasingly outsiders perceived them not simply as exotic or mythic beings but as complex persons who fit into traditional American society while reflecting its cultural diversity. Hebert-Leiter explores this transition in Ernest Gaines's novel A Gathering of Old Men and James Lee Burke's detective novels featuring Dave Robicheaux. She also discusses the works of Ada Jack Carver, Elma Godchaux, Shirley Ann Grau, and other writers.
From Longfellow through Tim Gautreaux, Acadian and Cajun literature captures the stages of this fascinating cultural dynamism, making it a pivotal part of any history of American ethnicity and of Cajun culture in particular. Concise and accessible, Becoming Cajun, Becoming American provides an excellent introduction to American Acadian and Cajun literature.
"Precise transcriptions and first-time English translations of seventeenth-century Aztec plays"
Barry D. Sell and Louise M. Burkhart have chosen plays that represent the types of dramas performed in late-colonial Aztec communities and underscore the differences between local religion and church doctrine. Included are a complex epiphany drama from Metepec, two morality plays, two Passion plays, and three history plays that show how Nahuas dramatized Christian legends to reinterpret the Spanish Conquest. Fruits of a performance tradition rooted in sixteenth-century collaborations between Franciscan friars and Nahua students, these plays demonstrate how vigorously Nahuas maintained their traditions of community theater, passing scripts from one town to another and preserving them over many generations.
The editors provide new insights into Nahua conceptions of Christianity and of society, gender, and morality in the late colonial period. Their precise transcriptions and first-time English translations make this, along with the previous volumes, an indispensable resource for Mesoamerican scholars.
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