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Ben Hecht had seen his share of death-row psychopaths, crooked ward bosses, and Capone gun thugs by the time he had come of age as a crime reporter in gangland Chicago. His grim experience with what he called "the soul of man" gave him a kind of uncanny foresight a decade later, when a loose cannon named Adolf Hitler began to rise to power in central Europe. In 1932, Hechtsolidified his legend as ""the Shakespeare of Hollywood"" with his thriller Scarface, the Howard Hughes epic considered the gangster movie to end all gangster movies. But Hecht rebelled against his Jewish bosses at the movie studios when they refused to make films about the Nazi menace. Leveraging his talents and celebrity connections to orchestrate a spectacular one-man publicity campaign, he mobilized pressure on the Roosevelt administration for an Allied plan to rescue Europe's Jews. Then after the war, Hecht became notorious, embracing the labels "gangster" and "terrorist" in partnering with the mobster Mickey Cohen to smuggle weapons to Palestine in the fight for a Jewish state. The Notorious Ben Hecht: Iconoclastic Writer and Militant Zionist is a biography of a great twentieth century writer that treats his activism during the 1940s as the central drama of his life. It details the story of how Hecht earned admiration as a humanitarian and vilification as an extremist at this pivotal moment in history, about the origins of his beliefs in his varied experiences in American media, and about the consequences. Who else but Hecht could have drawn the admiration of Ezra Pound, clowned around with Harpo Marx, written Notorious! and Spellbound with Alfred Hitchcock, launched Marlon Brando's career, ghosted Marilyn Monroe's memoirs, hosted Jack Kerouac and Salvador Dali on his television talk show, and plotted revolt with Menachem Begin? Any lover of modern history who follows this journey through the worlds of gangsters, reporters, Jazz Age artists, Hollywood stars, movie moguls, political radicals, and guerrilla fighters will never look at the twentieth century in the same way again.
What makes a work of literature good or bad? How freely can the reader interpret it? Could a nursery rhyme like "Baa Baa Black Sheep" be full of concealed loathing, resentment, and aggression? In this accessible, delightfully entertaining book, Terry Eagleton addresses these intriguing questions and a host of others. "How to Read Literature "is the book of choice for students new to the study of literature and for all other readers interested in deepening their understanding and enriching their reading experience.
In a series of brilliant analyses, Eagleton shows how to read with due attention to tone, rhythm, texture, syntax, allusion, ambiguity, and other formal aspects of literary works. He also examines broader questions of character, plot, narrative, the creative imagination, the meaning of fictionality, and the tension between what works of literature say and what they show. Unfailingly authoritative and cheerfully opinionated, the author provides useful commentaries on classicism, Romanticism, modernism, and postmodernism along with spellbinding insights into a huge range of authors, from Shakespeare and J. K. Rowling to Jane Austen and Samuel Beckett.
An engaging invitation to rediscover Henry Miller "and to learn how his anarchist sensibility can help us escape oethe air-conditioned nightmare of the modern world The American writer Henry Miller's critical reputation--if not his popular readership "has been in eclipse at least since Kate Millett's blistering critique in Sexual Politics, her landmark 1970 study of misogyny in literature and art. Even a Miller fan like the acclaimed Scottish writer John Burnside finds Miller's "sex books" "including The Rosy Crucifixion, Tropic of Cancer, and Tropic of Capricorn ""boring and embarrassing." But Burnside says that Miller's notorious image as a "pornographer and woman hater" has hidden his vital, true importance "his anarchist sensibility and the way it shows us how, by fleeing from conformity of all kinds, we may be able to save ourselves from the "air-conditioned nightmare" of the modern world. Miller wrote that "there is no salvation in becoming adapted to a world which is crazy," and in this short, engaging, and personal book, Burnside shows how Miller teaches us to become less adapted to the world, to resist a life sentence to the prison of social, intellectual, emotional, and material conditioning. Exploring the full range of Miller's work, and giving special attention to The Air-Conditioned Nightmare and The Colossus of Maroussi, Burnside shows how, with humor and wisdom, Miller illuminates the misunderstood tradition of anarchist thought. Along the way, Burnside reflects on Rimbaud's enormous influence on Miller, as well as on how Rimbaud and Miller have influenced his own writing. An unconventional and appealing account of an unjustly neglected writer, On Henry Miller restores to us a figure whose searing criticism of the modern world has never been more relevant.
'To see a World in a Grain of Sand 'And a Heaven in a Wild Flower Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand And Eternity in an hour' William Blake wrote some of the most moving and memorable verse in the English language. Deeply committed to visionary and imaginative experience, yet also fiercely engaged with the turbulent politics of his era, he is now recognised as a major contributor to the Romantic Movement. This edition presents Blake's poems in their literary categories and genres to which they belong: his much-loved lyrics, ballads, comic and satirical verse, descriptive and discursive poems, verse epistles, and, finally, his remarkable 'prophetic' poems, including the whole of his two diffuse epics, Milton and Jerusalem. Blake's poetry is intellectually challenging as well as formally inventive, and this edition has a substantial critical introduction which places his ideas in the contemporary context of the Enlightenment and the artistic reaction against its key assumptions.
Study of the genesis of the novel is facilitated by the reproduction of Dickens' working plans and, for the first time, by some thousands of meticulous textual notes. "Backgrounds" offers all of Dickens' correspondence about Bleak House as well as contextual materials that document the Victorian controversy over pollution, a theme central to the novel, and present contemporary attitudes toward the government, the courts, and the police, to enhance the setting of the story. Also featured are several hundred annotations which fully elucidate for today's readers the allusions and topical references in this remarkably allusive Victorian masterpiece. Especially helpful is a clear exposition of the nature of law procedures in the Court of Chancery, which is crucial to an understanding of the central action of the story. "Critical essays" reprinted here include interpretations by G. K. Chesterton, J. Hillis Miller, George Ford, A. O. J. Cockshut, W. J. Harvey, H. M. Daleski, and Ian Ousby.
This is the endorsed publication from OCR and Bloomsbury for the Latin AS and A-Level (Group 3) prescription of Horace's Satires, giving full Latin text, commentary and vocabulary for Satires 1.1 lines 1-12, 28-100; 1.3 lines 25-75; and 2.2 lines 1-30, 70-111. A detailed introduction places the poems in their Roman literary context. `Telling the truth with a smile' is the way Horace describes his approach to satire in this, his first published poetry. The poems in this collection discuss universal ideas of how we should live our lives simply with regard to money, ambition, food and friendship and how to live contented with what nature provides rather than always yearning for more. The poet does this in a manner which is light but not flippant, always entertaining and powerfully moving at the same time. Resources are available on the Companion Website www.bloomsbury.com/ocr-editions-2019-2021
Gaming and chiefing. Imposters and freedmen. Distinguished novelist Robert J. Conley examines some of the most interesting facets of the Cherokee world. In 26 essays laced with humor, understatement, and even open sarcasm, this popular writer takes on politics, culture, his people's history, and what it means to be Cherokee. As provocative as it is entertaining, Cherokee Thoughts will intrigue tribal members and anyone with an interest in the Cherokee people.
From the renowned artist and author Patti Smith, an inspired exploration of the nature of creative invention A work of creative brilliance may seem like magic-its source a mystery, its impact unexpectedly stirring. How does an artist accomplish such an achievement, connecting deeply with an audience never met? In this groundbreaking book, one of our culture's beloved artists offers a detailed account of her own creative process, inspirations, and unexpected connections. Patti Smith first presents an original and beautifully crafted tale of obsession-a young skater who lives for her art, a possessive collector who ruthlessly seeks his prize, a relationship forged of need both craven and exalted. She then takes us on a second journey, exploring the sources of her story. We travel through the South of France to Camus's house, and visit the garden of the great publisher Gallimard where the ghosts of Mishima, Nabokov, and Genet mingle. Smith tracks down Simone Weil's grave in a lonely cemetery, hours from London, and winds through the nameless Paris streets of Patrick Modiano's novels. Whether writing in a cafe or a train, Smith generously opens her notebooks and lets us glimpse the alchemy of her art and craft in this arresting and original book on writing. The Why I Write series is based on the Windham-Campbell Lectures, delivered annually to commemorate the awarding of the Donald Windham-Sandy M. Campbell Literature Prizes at Yale University.
The last couple of decades have witnessed a flourishing of Arab-American literature across multiple genres. Yet, increased interest in this literature is ironically paralleled by a prevalent bias against Arabs and Muslims that portrays their long presence in the US as a recent and unwelcome phenomenon. Spanning the 1990s to the present, Carol Fadda-Conrey takes in the sweep of literary and cultural texts by Arab-American writers in order to understand the ways in which their depictions of Arab homelands, whether actual or imagined, play a crucial role in shaping cultural articulations of US citizenship and belonging. By asserting themselves within a US framework while maintaining connections to their homelands, Arab-Americans contest the blanket representations of themselves as dictated by the US nation-state. Deploying a multidisciplinary framework at the intersection of Middle-Eastern studies, US ethnic studies, and diaspora studies, Fadda-Conrey argues for a transnational discourse that overturns the often rigid affiliations embedded in ethnic labels. Tracing the shifts in transnational perspectives, from the founders of Arab-American literature, like Gibran Kahlil Gibran and Ameen Rihani, to modern writers such as Naomi Shihab Nye, Joseph Geha, Randa Jarrar, and Suheir Hammad, Fadda-Conrey finds that contemporary Arab-American writers depict strong yet complex attachments to the US landscape. She explores how the idea of home is negotiated between immigrant parents and subsequent generations, alongside analyses of texts that work toward fostering more nuanced understandings of Arab and Muslim identities in the wake of post-9/11 anti-Arab sentiments.
The Enlightenment has long been seen as synonymous with the beginnings of modern Western intellectual and political culture. As a set of ideas and a social movement, this historical moment, the 'age of reason' of the seventeenth and eighteenth century, is marked by attempts to place knowledge on new foundations. The Cambridge Companion to the French Enlightenment brings together essays by leading scholars representing disciplines ranging from philosophy, religion and literature, to art, medicine, anthropology and architecture, to analyse the French Enlightenment. Each essay presents a concise view of an important aspect of the French Enlightenment, discussing its defining characteristics, internal dynamics and historical transformations. The Companion discusses the most influential reinterpretations of the Enlightenment that have taken place during the last two decades, reinterpretations that both reflect and have contributed to important re-evaluations of received ideas about the Enlightenment and the early modern period more generally.
We believe we know our bodies intimately--that their material reality is certain and that this certainty leads to an epistemological truth about sex, gender, and identity. By exploring and giving equal weight to transgendered subjectivities, however, Gayle Salamon upends these certainties. Considering questions of transgendered embodiment via phenomenology (Maurice Merleau-Ponty), psychoanalysis (Sigmund Freud and Paul Ferdinand Schilder), and queer theory, Salamon advances an alternative theory of normative and non-normative gender, proving the value and vitality of trans experience for thinking about embodiment.
Salamon suggests that the difference between transgendered and normatively gendered bodies is not, in the end, material. Rather, she argues that the production of gender itself relies on a disjunction between the "felt sense" of the body and an understanding of the body's corporeal contours, and that this process need not be viewed as pathological in nature. Examining the relationship between material and phantasmatic accounts of bodily being, Salamon emphasizes the productive tensions that make the body both present and absent in our consciousness and work to confirm and unsettle gendered certainties. She questions traditional theories that explain how the body comes to be--and comes to be made one's own--and she offers a new framework for thinking about what "counts" as a body. The result is a groundbreaking investigation into the phenomenological life of gender.
How do genres develop? In what ways do they reflect changing political and cultural trends? What do they tell us about the motivations of publishers and readers? Combining close readings and formal analysis with a sociology of literary institutions and markets, Minor Characters Have Their Day offers a compelling new approach to genre study and contemporary fiction. Focusing on the booming genre of books that transform minor characters from canonical literary texts into the protagonists of new works, Jeremy Rosen makes broader claims about the state of contemporary fiction, the strategies of the publishing industry over recent decades, and the function of literary characters. Rosen traces the recent surge in "minor-character elaboration" to the late 1960s and works such as Jean Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea and Tom Stoppard's Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. These early examples often recover the voices of marginalized individuals and groups. As the genre has exploded between the 1980s and the present, with novels about Ahab's wife, Huck Finn's father, and Mr. Dalloway, it has begun to embody the neoliberal commitments of subjective experience, individual expression, and agency. Eventually, large-scale publishers capitalized on the genre as a way to appeal to educated audiences aware of the prestige of the classics and to draw in identity-based niche markets. Rosen's conclusion ties the understudied evolution of minor-character elaboration to the theory of literary character.
An attractive and approachable selection of the work of the first of Ireland's truly great writers, Jonathan Swift. Extracts from his fiction, social satires, poems both lyrical and scatological, essays in fantasy, epigrams, and personal letters present, along with the editor's introductory pieces, the twin stories of Swift's controversial public career and of his unusual, conflicted, private life. Whether he was mocking the English king and aristocracy in Gulliver's Travels, castigating the self-deluding vanities of ladies of fashion, discussing garden design with the woman he loved or intervening on behalf of the underprivileged poor of Dublin who worshipped him, Swift was unique, and it should be no surprise that his exploits became a subject of native Gaelic folklore. With Emma Byrne's striking illustrations, this book is an ideal introduction to the genius whose thought and wit dominated the half-forgotten world of early 18th century Ireland.
Does the study of aesthetics have tangible effects in the real world? Does examining the work of diaspora writers and artists change our view of ""the Other""? In this thoughtful book, Ebrahimi argues that an education in the humanities is as essential as one in politics and ethics, critically training the imagination toward greater empathy. Despite the surge in Iranian memoirs, their contributions to debunking an abstract idea of terror and their role in encouraging democratic thinking remain understudied. In examining creative work by women of Iranian descent, Ebrahimi argues that Shirin Neshat, Marjane Satrapi, and Parsua Bashi make the Other familiar and break a cycle of reactionary xenophobia. These authors, instead of relying on indignation, build imaginative bridges in their work that make it impossible to blame one evil, external enemy. Ebrahimi explores both classic and hybrid art forms, including graphic novels and photo-poetry, to advocate for the importance of aesthetics to inform and influence a global community. Drawing on the theories of Ranciere, Butler, Arendt, and Levinas, Ebrahimi identifies the ways in which these works give a human face to the Other, creating the space and language to imagine a new political and ethical landscape.
Shakespeare for Freedom presents a powerful, plausible and political argument for Shakespeare's meaning and value. It ranges across the breadth of the Shakespeare phenomenon, offering a new interpretation not just of the characters and plays, but also of the part they have played in theatre, criticism, civic culture and politics. Its story includes a glimpse of 'Freetown' in Romeo and Juliet, which comes to life in the 1769 Stratford Jubilee; the Shakespearean careers of the Leicester Chartist, Cooper, and the Hungarian hero, Kossuth; Hegel's recognition of Shakespearean freedom as the modern breakthrough; its fatal effects in America; the disgust it inspired in Tolstoy; its rehabilitation by Ted Hughes, and its obscure centrality in the 2012 Olympics. Ultimately, it issues a positive Shakespearean prognosis for freedom as a vital (in both senses), unending struggle. Shakespeare for Freedom shows why Shakespeare has mattered for four hundred years, and why he still matters today.
The Iliad is the first and the greatest literary achievement of Greek civilization - an epic poem without rival in the literature of the world, and the cornerstone of Western culture.The story of the Iliad centres on the critical events in the last year of the Trojan War, which lead to Achilleus' killing of Hektor and determine the fate of Troy. But Homer's theme is not simply war or heroism. With compassion and humanity, he presents a universal and tragic view of the world, of human life lived under the shadow of suffering and death, set against a vast and largely unpitying divine background. The Iliad is the first of the great tragedies.
Through the novels of England's foremost woman writer, we explore the Regency world at the time of the Napoleonic wars, its manners, fashion and style, pastimes and entertainments. Jane Austen - loved now by a huge audience, thanks partly to modern-day TV and film - led a quiet, uneventful life - yet lived amid great events, in a society viewed with remarkable wit and perception. Here are the places Austen knew, visited and featured in her books: the settings for balls, country strolls, holiday tours, carriage drives, walks, picnics, rendezvous and revelations. The guide includes evocative quotations, surprising facts and places to visit.
’A ferociously intelligent, masterful life of Colette, which stays supremely in control of her wild, bold, brilliant and often obnoxious subject.’ Hermoine Lee, Books of the Year, Observer
Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette was this century’s first modern woman. She arrived in Paris around 1900 as the provincial child bride of a notorious rake and brilliant literary impresario, Willy, who signed her first novels, the Claudine series, as his own. They became the greatest French bestsellers of all time. When this tumultuous marriage ended, Colette went off with a high-born woman lover, the virile Marquise de Belboeuf, and embarked on a flamboyant stage career. She bared her breast to raucous applause in the French music-hall and became a celebrity of the lesbian demi-monde. Until her death in 1954, she continued to rewrite the rules for loving, working, and ageing.
Judith Thurman is the author of Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller, which won the National Book Award for Biography in 1983. This book is no less an achievement, showing that even at the beginning of this century, Colette’s life and work still have the power to open eyes and challenge the norms.
The ancient Greeks hard†‘wired a tragic sensibility into their culture. By looking disaster squarely in the face, by understanding just how badly things could spiral out of control, they sought to create a communal sense of responsibility and courage—to spur citizens and their leaders to take the difficult actions necessary to avert such a fate. Today, after more than seventy years of great-power peace and a quarter-century of unrivaled global leadership, Americans have lost their sense of tragedy. They have forgotten that the descent into violence and war has been all too common throughout human history. This amnesia has become most pronounced just as Americans and the global order they created are coming under graver threat than at any time in decades.
In a forceful argument that brims with historical sensibility and policy insights, two distinguished historians argue that a tragic sensibility is necessary if America and its allies are to address the dangers that menace the international order today. Tragedy may be commonplace, Brands and Edel argue, but it is not inevitable—so long as we regain an appreciation of the world’s tragic nature before it is too late.
Africa Writes Back was published in 2008 to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the publication of Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart - the novel which provided the impetus for the foundation of the Heinemann African Writers Series in 1962 with Chinua Achebe as the Editorial Adviser. With the 50th anniversary of the AWS being celebrated in 2012, James Currey's book has a new resonance. '... not only the story of a publishing enterprise of great significance; it is also a large part of the story of African literature and its dissemination in the latter half of the twentieth century. The manuscript is full of the drama of that enterprise, the drama of dealing with the mother house, William Heinemann, of dealing with the often intractable political constraints dominating the intellectual space across Africa, and not least of all dealing with the writers themselves - with their ambitions, their temperaments, their financial needs and, at time, their perception of a colonial relationship between themselves and a European publishing house.' - Clive Wake, Emeritus Professor of Modern Languages, University of Kent at Canterbury. North America: Ohio U Press; Ghana: Sub-Saharan Publishers; South Africa: Wits U Press; Nigeria: HEBN; Kenya: EAEP; Zimbabwe: Weaver Press
This Companion contains thirteen new essays from leading international experts on William Carlos Williams, covering his major poetry and prose works - including Paterson, In the American Grain, and the Stecher trilogy. It addresses central issues of recent Williams scholarship and discusses a wide variety of topics: Williams and the visual arts, Williams and medicine, Williams's version of local modernism, Williams and gender, Williams and multiculturalism, and more. Authors examine Williams's relationships with figures such as Ezra Pound, Wallace Stevens, and H. D. and Marianne Moore, and illustrate the importance of his legacy for Allen Ginsberg, Amiri Baraka, Robert Creeley, Robert Lowell, and numerous contemporary poets. Featuring a chronology and an up-to-date bibliography of the writer, The Cambridge Companion to William Carlos Williams is an invaluable guide for students of this influential literary figure.
The Hum of the World is an invitation to contemplate what would happen if we heard the world as attentively as we see it. Balancing big ideas with playful wit and lyrical prose, this imaginative volume identifies the role of sound in Western experience as the primary medium in which the presence and persistence of life acquire tangible form. The positive experience of aliveness is not merely in accord with sound, but inaccessible, even inconceivable, without it. Lawrence Kramer's poetic book roves freely over music, media, language, philosophy, and science from the ancient world to the present, along the way revealing how life is apprehended through sounds ranging from pandemonium to the faint background hum of the world. Easily moving from reflections on pivotal texts and music to the introduction of elemental concepts, this warm meditation on auditory culture uncovers the knowledge and pleasure made available when we recognize that the world is alive with sound.
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