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A History of English Literature has received exceptional reviews.
Tracing the development of one of the world's richest literatures
from the Old English period through to the present day, the
narrative discusses a wide range of key authors but never loses its
clarity or verve.
VictorianStudies on theWebCritics Choice!Rudyard Kipling: Hell and Heroism is an exploration of two fundamental yet greatly neglected aspects of the author's life and writings: his deep-seated pessimism and his complex creed of heroism. The method of the book is both biographical and critical. Biographically, it traces the roots of Kipling's dark worldview and his search for something to believe in, a way of thinking and acting in defiance of life's hellishness. There matters were more basic to him than any of his social or political opinions, but this the first full-length study devoted to them. Critically, the book takes a fresh and close look at some of Kipling's most important works. The result challenges long established assumptions and amounts to a major reconsideration of novels like Kim and stories like "Mary Postgate" and "The Gardener." Central in these discussions of individual writings is Kipling's concern with the heroic life, but of equal importance is the analysis and evaluation of them as works of art. Avoiding the tangled and special language of some recent literary theory, this will appeal to a wide audience of those interested in Kipling's mind and art.
This collection of essays, written by many of the foremost McGahern scholars, provides solid reasons for why the Leitrim writer has assumed canonical status since his premature death in 2006, an event which sparked something akin to a period of national mourning in Ireland. The reason why so many people felt his loss so keenly is probably due to the fact that McGahern's attention to detail, his feel for landscape, his understanding of the Irish psyche, his carefully chiselled prose, his love of social and religious rituals, all contributed to his remarkable evocation of what it was like to live in Ireland at a specific time in its evolution - that is to say, from the time of independence up to the beginning of the new millennium. This is a multidisciplinary collection which situates McGahern in his literary context and explains the ingredients that make him such a revered writer, one who had his finger firmly on the pulse of the nation. Violence, love and desire, ecology, memory, friendship, photography, rage, sin, are examined with a view to assessing how they are pertinent to McGahern's work and the extent to which they contribute to his literary legacy. Declan Kiberd speaks from personal experience of the young writer who taught in Belgrove National School and was fascinated with cricket, whereas Donal Ryan describes how reading McGahern almost caused him to abandon his literary vocation because of his belief that he could never write like this master of prose. There is something in this book for both the specialist and non-specialist alike and it is essential reading for anyone with even a passing interest in McGahern the man and writer. Derek Hand is Head of the School of English at Dublin City University and Eamon Maher is a Lecturer in Technological University Dublin
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak's original essay "Can the Subaltern Speak?" transformed the analysis of colonialism through an eloquent and uncompromising argument that affirmed the contemporary relevance of Marxism while using deconstructionist methods to explore the international division of labor and capitalism's "worlding" of the world. Spivak's essay hones in on the historical and ideological factors that obstruct the possibility of being heard for those who inhabit the periphery. It is a probing interrogation of what it means to have political subjectivity, to be able to access the state, and to suffer the burden of difference in a capitalist system that promises equality yet withholds it at every turn.
Since its publication, "Can the Subaltern Speak?" has been cited, invoked, imitated, and critiqued. In these phenomenal essays, eight scholars take stock of the effects and response to Spivak's work. They begin by contextualizing the piece within the development of subaltern and postcolonial studies and the quest for human rights. Then, through the lens of Spivak's essay, they rethink historical problems of subalternity, voicing, and death. A final section situates "Can the Subaltern Speak?" within contemporary issues, particularly new international divisions of labor and the politics of silence among indigenous women of Guatemala and Mexico. In an afterword, Spivak herself considers her essay's past interpretations and future incarnations and the questions and histories that remain secreted in the original and revised versions of "Can the Subaltern Speak?"--both of which are reprinted in this book.
The text is that of the 1813 first edition, accompanied by revised and expanded explanatory annotations. This edition also includes: biographical portraits of Austen by members of her family and, new to the fourth edition, those by Jon Spence (Becoming Jane Austen) and Paula Byrne (The Real Jane Austen: A Life in Small Things). Also included are fifteen critical essays, twelve of them new to the fourth edition, reflecting the finest current scholarship. Contributors include Janet Todd, Jim Collins, Andrew Elfenbein, Felicia Bonaparte and Tiffany Potter, amongst others. "Writers on Austen"-a new section of brief comments by Mark Twain, Virginia Woolf, W. H. Auden and others. A Chronology and revised and expanded Selected Bibliography.
The Cambridge Companion to World Literature introduces the significant ideas and practices of world literary studies. It provides a lucid and accessible account of the fundamental issues and concepts in world literature, including the problems of imagining the totality of literature; comparing literary works across histories, cultures and languages; and understanding how literary production is affected by forces such as imperialism and globalization. The essays demonstrate how detailed critical engagements with particular literary texts call forth differing conceptions of world literature, and, conversely, how theories of world literature shape our practices of readings. Subjects covered include cosmopolitanism, transnationalism, internationalism, scale and systems, sociological criticism, translation, scripts, and orality. This book also includes original analyses of genres and forms, ranging from tragedy to the novel and graphic fiction, lyric poetry to the short story and world cinema.
Created by Book Riot, an online destination devoted to people who live to read, this smartly designed reading log consists of entry pages to record stats, impressions, and reviews of each book you read. Evenly interspersed among these entry pages are 12 challenges inspired by Book Riot's annual Read Harder initiative, which began in 2015 to encourage readers to pick up passed-over books, try out new genres, and choose titles from a wider range of voices and perspectives. Indulge your inner book nerd and read a book about books, get a new perspective on current events by reading a book written by an immigrant, find a hidden gem by reading a book published by an independent press, and so much more. Each challenge includes an inspiring quotation, an explanation of why the challenge will prove to be rewarding, and five book recommendations that fulfill the challenge.
'...Thomas Hardy's Personal Writings is an informative book, and a superlatively well-edited one. Professor Orel has been generous in his inclusions, meticulous in his texts, and thorough in his annotations. Anything that one is likely to want to read of Hardy's occasional prose is here, and what is not here is carefully described in an annotated appendix. The book takes it place at once with Richard Purdy's bibliography as a standard, useful, trustworthy work in the library of essential Hardy scholarship.' Times Literary Supplement '...these essays certainly deserve to be much better known.' Raymond Williams, Guardian
A BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week 'This is such a great idea for a book, and Michelle Dean carries it off, showing us the complexities of her fascinating, extraordinary subjects, in print and out in the world. Dean writes with vigor, depth, knowledge and absorption, and as a result Sharp is a real achievement' Meg Wolitzer, New York Times Dorothy Parker, Hannah Arendt, Mary McCarthy, Susan Sontag, Joan Didion, Nora Ephron and Janet Malcolm are just some of the women whose lives intertwined as they cut through twentieth-century cultural and intellectual life in the United States, arguing as fervently with each other as they did with the men who so often belittled their work as journalists, novelists, critics and poets. These women are united by their 'sharpness': an accuracy and precision of thought and wit, a claiming of power through their writing. Sharp is a rich and lively portrait of these women and their world, where Manhattan cocktail parties, fuelled by lethal quantities of both alcohol and gossip, could lead to high-stakes slanging matches in the Partisan Review or the New York Review of Books. It is fascinating and revealing on how these women came to be so influential in a climate in which they were routinely met with condescension and derision by their male counterparts. Michelle Dean mixes biography, criticism and cultural and social history to create an enthralling exploration of how a group of brilliant women became central figures in the world of letters, staked out territory for themselves and began to change the world.
The question of the relationship between humanity and the non-human world may seem a modern phenomenon; but in fact, even in the early medieval period people actively reflected on their own engagement with the non-human world, with such reflections profoundly shaping their literature. This book reveals how the Anglo-Saxons themselves conceptualised the relationship, using the Saints Lives of Cuthbert and Guthlac as a prism. Each saint is fundamentally linked to a specific and recognisable location in the English landscape: Lindisfarne and Farne for Cuthbert, and the East Anglian fens and the island of Crowland for Guthlac. These landscapes of the mind were defined by the theological and philosophical perspectives of their authors and audiences. The world in all its wonder was Creation, shaped by God. When humanity fell in Eden, its relationship to this world was transformed: cold now bites, fire burns, and wolves attack. In these Lives, however, saints, the holy epitome of humanity, are shown to restore the human relationship with Creation, as in the sea-otters warming Cuthbert's frozen feet, or birds and fish gathering to Guthlac like sheep to their shepherd. BRITTON ELLIOTT BROOKS is Project Assistant Professor at the University of Tokyo, Centre for Global Communication Strategies.
Poetry is often viewed as culturally homogeneous-"stubbornly national," in T. S. Eliot's phrase, or "the most provincial of the arts," according to W. H. Auden. But in A Transnational Poetics, Jahan Ramazani uncovers the ocean-straddling energies of the poetic imagination-in modernism and the Harlem Renaissance; in post-World War II North America and the North Atlantic; and in ethnic American, postcolonial, and black British writing. Cross-cultural exchange and influence are, he argues, among the chief engines of poetic development in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Reexamining the work of a wide array of poets, from Eliot, Yeats, and Langston Hughes to Elizabeth Bishop, Lorna Goodison, and Agha Shahid Ali, Ramazani reveals the many ways in which modern and contemporary poetry in English overflows national borders and exceeds the scope of national literary paradigms. Through a variety of transnational templates-globalization, migration, travel, genre, influence, modernity, decolonization, and diaspora-he discovers poetic connection and dialogue across nations and even hemispheres.
How and why did the life and music of Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) matter to experimental writers in the early twentieth century? Previous answers to this question have tended to focus on structural analogies between musical works and literary texts, charting the many different ways in which poetry and prose resemble Beethoven's compositions. This book takes a different approach. It focuses on how early twentieth-century writers-chief among them E. M. Forster, Aldous Huxley, Wyndham Lewis, Dorothy Richardson, Rebecca West, and Virginia Woolf-profited from the representational conventions associated in the nineteenth century and beyond with Beethovenian culture. The emphasis of Moonlighting falls for the most part on how modernist writers made use of Beethovenian legend. It is concerned neither with formal similarities between Beethoven's music and modernist writing nor with the music of Beethoven per se, but with certain ways of understanding Beethoven's music which had long before 1900 taken shape as habit, myth, cliche, and fantasy, and with the influence they had on experimental writing up to 1930. Moonlighting suggests that the modernists drew knowingly and creatively on the conventional. It proposes that many of the most experimental works of modernist literature were shaped by a knowing reliance on Beethovenian consensus; in short, that the literary modernists knew Beethovenian legend when they saw it, and that they were eager to use it.
Published to commemorate the eightieth anniversary of Armistice, this selection of poetry is intended to be an introduction to the great wealth of First World War poetry.
The sequence is random and drawn from several sources, mixing both well-known and less familiar poetry, and is limited to poems written in English.
"New sources for Shakespeare do not turn up every day... This is a truly significant one that has not heretofore been studied or published. The list of passages now traced back to this source is impressive." - David Bevington, Professor Emeritus, University of Chicago "A Brief Discourse of Rebellion and Rebels" is the only uniquely existent, unpublished manuscript that can be shown to have been a source for Shakespeare's plays. George North wrote the treatise in 1576 while at Kirtling Hall, the North family estate in Cambridgeshire. His manuscript, newly uncovered by the authors at the British Library, has many implications for our understanding of Shakespeare's plays. for example, not only does it bring clarity to the Fool's mysterious reference to Merlin in King Lear, but also upsets the prevailing opinion that Shakespeare invented the final hours of Jack Cade in 2 Henry VI. Linguistic and thematic correspondences between the North manuscript and Shakespeare's plays make it clear that the playwright borrowed from this document in other plays as well, including Richard III, 3 Henry VI, Henry V, King John, Macbeth, and Coriolanus. The opening chapters of the book investigate such connections; the volume also contains both a transcript and a facsimile of "A Brief Discourse", making this previously unknown document readily available. DENNIS MCCARTHY is an independent scholar; JUNE SCHLUETER is Charles A. Dana Professor Emerita of English at Lafayette College, Easton, Pennsylvania.
From Jonathan Swift to Washington Irving, those looking to propose and justify exceptions to social and political norms turned to Cervantes's notoriously mad comic hero as a model. A World of Disorderly Notions examines the literary and political effects of Don Quixote, arguing that what makes this iconic character so influential across oceans and cultures is not his madness but his logic. Aaron Hanlon contends that the logic of quixotism is in fact exceptionalism-the strategy of rendering oneself an exception to everyone else's rules. As British and American societies of the Enlightenment developed the need to question the acceptance of various forms of imperialism and social contract theory-and to explain both the virtues and limitations of revolutions past and ongoing-it was Quixote's exceptionalism, not his madness, that captured the imaginations of so many writers and statesmen. As a consequence, the eighteenth century witnessed an explosion of imitations of Quixote in fiction and polemical writing, by writers such as Jonathan Swift, Charlotte Lennox, Henry Fielding, and Washington Irving, among others. Combining literary history and political theory, Hanlon clarifies an ongoing and immediately relevant history of exceptionalism, of how states from Golden Age Spain to imperial Britain to the formative United States rendered themselves exceptions so they could act with impunity. In so doing, he tells the story of how Quixote became exceptional.
These hundred poems and fragments constitute virtually all of "Sappho" that survives and effectively bring to life the woman whom the Greeks consider to be their greatest lyric poet. Mary Barnard's translations are lean, incisive, direct - the best ever published. She has rendered the beloved poet's verses, long the bane of translators, more authentically than anyone else in English.
In existence for 258 years, the English East India Company ran a complex, highly integrated global trading network. It supplied the tea for the Boston Tea Party, the cotton textiles used to purchase slaves in Africa, and the opium for China's nineteenth-century addiction. In India it expanded from a few small coastal settlements to govern territories that far exceeded the British Isles in extent and population. It minted coins in its name, established law courts and prisons, and prosecuted wars with one of the world's largest armies. Over time, the Company developed a pronounced and aggressive colonialism that laid the foundation for Britain's Eastern empire. A study of the Company, therefore, is a study of the rise of the modern world. In clear, engaging prose, Ian Barrow sets the rise and fall of the Company into political, economic, and cultural contexts and explains how and why the Company was transformed from a maritime trading entity into a territorial colonial state. Excerpts from eighteen primary documents illustrate the main themes and ideas discussed in the text. Maps, illustrations, a glossary, and a chronology are also included.
The literature of Wales is one of the oldest continuous literary traditions in Europe. The earliest surviving poetry was forged in the battlefields of post-Roman Wales and the 'Old North' of Britain, and the Welsh-language poets of today still write within the same poetic tradition. In the early twentieth century, Welsh writers in English outnumbered writers in Welsh for the first time, generating new modes of writing and a crisis of national identity which began to resolve itself at the end of the twentieth century with the political devolution of Wales within the United Kingdom. By considering the two literatures side by side, this book argues that bilingualism is now a normative condition in Wales. Written by leading scholars, this book provides a comprehensive chronological guide to fifteen centuries of Welsh literature and Welsh writing in English against a backdrop of key historical and political events in Britain.
On 29 August 1816, Lord Amherst, exhausted after travelling overnight during an embassy to China, was roughly handled in an attempt to compel him to attend an immediate audience with the Jiaqing Emperor at the Summer Palace of Yuanming Yuan. Fatigued and separated from his diplomatic credentials and ambassadorial robes, Amherst resisted, and left the palace in anger. The emperor, believing he had been insulted, dismissed the embassy without granting it an imperial audience and rejected its "tribute" of gifts. This diplomatic incident caused considerable disquiet at the time. Some 200 years later, it is timely in 2016 to consider once again the complex and vexed historical and cultural relations between two of the nineteenth-century world's largest empires. The interdisciplinary essays in this volume engage with the most recent work on British cultural representations of, and exchanges with, Qing China, extending our existing but still provisional understandings of this area of study in new and exciting directions. They cover such subjects as female foot binding; English and Chinese pastoral poetry; translations; representations of the trade in tea and opium; Tibet; and the political, cultural and environmental contexts of the Amherst embassy itself. Featuring British and Chinese writers such as Edmund Spenser, Wu Cheng'en, Thomas De Quincey, Oscar Wilde, James Hilton, and Zhuangzi, these essays take forward the compelling and highly relevant subject for today of Britain and China's relationship. Peter J. Kitson is Professor of English at the University of East Anglia; Robert Markley is W.D. and Sara E. Trowbridge Professor of English at the University of Illinois. Contributors: Elizabeth Chang, Peter J. Kitson, Eugenia Zuroski-Jenkins, Zhang Longxi, Mingjun Lu, Robert Markley, Eun Kyung Min, Q.S. Tong
How to Read a Book, originally published in 1940, has become a rare phenomenon, a living classic. It is the best and most successful guide to reading comprehension for the general reader. And now it has been completely rewritten and updated.
You are told about the various levels of reading and how to achieve them -- from elementary reading, through systematic skimming and inspectional reading, to speed reading, you learn how to pigeonhole a book, X-ray it, extract the author's message, criticize. You are taught the different reading techniques for reading practical books, imaginative literature, plays, poetry, history, science and mathematics, philosophy and social science.
Finally, the authors offer a recommended reading list and supply reading tests whereby you can measure your own progress in reading skills, comprehension and speed.
This original and enlightening book casts fresh light on Shakespeare by examining the lives of his relatives, friends, fellow-actors, collaborators and patrons both in their own right and in relation to his life. Well-known figures such as Richard Burbage, Ben Jonson and Thomas Middleton are freshly considered; little-known but relevant lives are brought to the fore, and revisionist views are expressed on such matters as Shakespeare's wealth, his family and personal relationships, and his social status. Written by a distinguished team, including some of the foremost biographers, writers and Shakespeare scholars of today, this enthralling volume forms an original contribution to Shakespearian biography and Elizabethan and Jacobean social history. It will interest anyone looking to learn something new about the dramatist and the times in which he lived. A supplementary website offers imagined first-person audio accounts from the featured subjects.
Considered one of Morocco's most important contemporary writers, Muhammad Zafzaf created stories of alterity, compassionate tales inhabited by prostitutes, thieves, and addicts living in the margins of society. In The Elusive Fox, Zafzaf's first novel to be translated into English, a young teacher visits the coastal city of Essaouira in the 1960s. There he meets a group of European bohemians and local Moroccans and is exposed to the grittier side of society. More than a novel, The Elusive Fox is a portrait of a city during a time of fluid cultural and political mores in Morocco.
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