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The late nineteenth century saw a re-examination of artistic creativity in response to questions surrounding the relation between human beings and automata. These questions arose from findings in the 'new psychology', physiological research that diminished the primacy of mind and viewed human action as neurological and systemic. Concentrating on British and continental culture from 1870 to 1911, this unique study explores ways in which the idea of automatism helped shape ballet, art photography, literature, and professional writing. Drawing on documents including novels and travel essays, Linda M. Austin finds a link between efforts to establish standards of artistic practice and challenges to the idea of human exceptionalism. Austin presents each artistic discipline as an example of the same process: creation that should be intended, but involving actions that evade mental control. This study considers how late nineteenth-century literature and arts tackled the scientific question, 'Are we automata?'
FOR SALE IN AFRICA ONLY The Somali novelist, Nuruddin Farah, is one of the most important African writers today. The central question that this book investigates is the relationship between modern identity and the novel as a genre. Nuruddin Farah's novels are shown by Moolla to encompass the history of the novel: from the 'proto-realism' of the acclaimed From a Crooked Rib to the modernism of A Naked Needle and the postmodernism of, most notably, Maps, returning almost full circle with his most recent novel Crossbones. Moolla examines his writing within the framework of Somali society and culture, Islamic traditions and political contexts, all of which are central themes in his work. She also addresses Farah's engagement with women's lives - his female characters and identities being at the heart of, rather than peripheral, to his stories - something that has distinguished him from many other male African writers. The book finally suggests that through his literary negotiation of the central contradiction of modern identity, Farah comes close to constituting a subject who no longer is transcendentally 'homeless', but finds a home 'everywhere' - a fitting project for a writer who has been in exile for the greater part of his life. F. Fiona Moolla is Lecturer in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Western Cape in South Africa as well as freelance writer and published author of short stories and novels. South Africa & Zimbabwe: Blue Weaver
The Art of Reading is the first--long overdue--collection of essays by the French classical philologist and humanist Jean Bollack to be published in English. As the scope of the collection demonstrates, Bollack felt at home thinking in depth about two things that seem starkly different to most other thinkers. We see on the one hand the classics of Greek poetry and philosophy, including the relatively obscure but in his hands illuminating re-readings of Greek philosophy by the doxographers. Then, on the other hand, there is modern, including contemporary, poetry. The author of monumental commentaries on the Oedipus Tyrannos of Sophocles and on the fragments of Empedocles, Bollack cultivated in himself and in a generation of students (academics and others) a way to read both sets of texts closely that is as uncompromising and demanding of the interpreter as it is of the reader of the interpretation. The results, which this wide-ranging but compact collection brings to mind, are designed to get beyond flat and clich d approaches to familiar works and to awaken the reader anew to the aesthetics, the complexity, and the intelligence that careful reconstruction of the text can bring to light.
Oscar Wilde was the most famous gay Irishman and Oscar's Shadow deals with Wilde and his homosexuality within the context of Ireland and of Irish cultural perceptions of his sexuality. The book investigates the questions: What was 'Oscar's shadow', his influence on twentieth and twenty-first century Irish culture and literature? What has Oscar Wilde meant to Ireland from his disgrace in May 1895 up to the present? Walshe presents Oscar's shadow in Ireland from 1895 to the present, using contemporary Irish newspaper reports of the Wilde trials of 1895, previously unpublished archival material, and a significant body of Irish critical studies, biographies and dramatisations of Wilde's life and sexuality. If perceptions of sexual identity evolve partly through public events, how then did Irish media and literary sources configure Wilde's homosexuality during the Wilde trials and after? Wilde's homosexuality was a contested discourse within twentieth-century Ireland, a discourse that became interconnected with Irish cultural nationalism. Thus Wilde became a weathervane for the rare but contentious discussions of homosexuality in Ireland, and his life and his writings usefully intertwine within these debates. Oscar's Shadow sets the historical context for cultural and legal perceptions of homosexuality in Ireland. This book is the first study of the formation of the idea of homosexuality in Ireland into the twentieth century and centres on an account of Wilde's visible presence as sexual 'other', analysing the strategies of normalisation used to police his unnameable sin within Irish media and literary accounts. Walshe argues that Wilde in Irish culture was perceived not so much as Oscar Wilde the unspeakable but much more as Oscar Wilde the dissident Irishman. Wilde, famous for his writings and notorious for his sexuality, is central for perceptions of homosexuality in modern Ireland
An exploration of the modern European novel from a renowned English literature scholar Reading the Modern European Novel since 1900 is an engaging, in-depth examination of the evolution of the modern European novel. Written in Daniel R. Schwarz's precise and highly readable style, this critical study offers compelling discussions on a wide range of major works since 1900 and examines recurring themes within the context of significant historical events, including both World Wars and the Holocaust. The author cites important developments in the evolution of the modern novel and explores how these paradigmatic works of fiction reflect intellectual and cultural history, including developments in painting and cinema. Schwarz focuses on narrative complexity, thematic subtlety, and formal originality as well as how novels render historical events and cultural developments Discussing major works by Proust, Camus, Mann, Kafka, Grass, di Lampedusa, Bassani, Kertesz, Pamuk, Kundera, Saramago, Muller and Ferrante, Schwarz explores how these often experimental masterworks pay homage to the their major predecessors--discussed in Schwarz's ground-breaking Reading the European Novel to 1900--even while proposing radical departures from realism in their approach to time and space, their testing the limits of language, and their innovative ways of rendering the human psyche. Written for teachers and students by a highly-acclaimed scholar and including valuable study questions, Reading the Modern European Novel since 1900 offers a guide for a deeper understanding of how these original modern masters respond to both the past and present.
Feminist discourses have called into question axiomatic world views and shown how gender and sexuality inevitably shape our perceptions, both historically and in the present moment. Founding Feminisms in Medieval Studies advances that critical endeavour with new questions and insights relating to gender and queer studies, sexualities, the subaltern, margins, and blurred boundaries. The volume's contributions, from French literary studies as well as German, English, history and art history, evince a variety of modes of feminist analysis, primarily in medieval studies but with extensions into early modernism. Several interrogate the ethics of feminist hermeneutics, the function of women characters in various literary genres, and so-called "natural" binaries - sex/gender, male/female, East/West, etc. - that undergird our vision of the world. Others investigate learned women and notions of female readership, authorship, and patronage in the production and reception of texts and manuscripts. Still others look at bodies - male male, female, neither, and both - and how clothes cover and socially encode them. Founding Feminisms in Medieval Studies is a tribute to E. Jane Burns, whose important work has proven foundational to late twentieth- and early twenty-first-century Old French feminist studies. Through her scholarship, teaching, and leadership in co-founding the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship, Burns has inspired a new generation of feminist scholars. Laine E. Doggett is Associate Professor of French at St. Mary's College of Maryland, St. Mary's City; Daniel E. O'Sullivan is Professor of French at the University of Mississippi. Contributors: Cynthia J. Brown, Matilda Tomaryn Bruckner, Kristin L. Burr, Madeline H. Caviness, Laine E. Doggett, Sarah-Grace Heller, Ruth Mazo Karras, Roberta L. Krueger, Sharon Kinoshita, Tom Linkinen, Daniel E. O'Sullivan, Lisa Perfetti, Ann Marie Rasmussen, Nancy Freeman Regalado, Elizabeth Robertson, Helen Solterer
The 'graphosphere' is the dynamic space of visible words. Graphospheres mutate, they are reconfigured with changes in technology, in modes of production, in social structures, in fashion and taste. The graphospheric environment can be public or private, monumental or ephemeral. This book explores a new approach to the study of writing, with a focus on Russia during its 'long early modernity' from the late fifteenth century to the early nineteenth century. Taking an inclusive approach, it charts unmapped territory, uncovers sources that have almost entirely escaped attention and therefore provides, in the first instance, a unique reference guide to cultures of writing in Russia over four hundred years. Besides generating fresh insights into distinctive features of Russian culture, this outward-looking and accessible book offers a pioneering case study for the wider comparative exploration of the significance of technologies of the word.
This Companion showcases the best scholarship on Ian McEwan's work, and offers a comprehensive demonstration of his importance in the canon of international contemporary fiction. The whole career is covered, and the connections as well as the developments across the oeuvre are considered. The essays offer both an assessment of McEwan's technical accomplishments and a sense of the contextual factors that have provided him with inspiration. This volume has been structured to highlight the points of intersection between literary questions and evaluations, and the treatment of contemporary socio-cultural issues and topics. For the more complex novels - such as Atonement - this book offers complementary perspectives. In this respect, The Cambridge Companion to Ian McEwan serves as a prism of interpretation, revealing the various interpretive emphases each of McEwan's more complex works invite, and to show how his various recurring preoccupations run through his career.
From one of today's keenest critics comes a collection of essays on poetry, religion, and the connection between the two Adam Kirsch is one of today's finest literary critics. This collection brings together his essays on poetry, religion, and the intersections between them, with a particular focus on Jewish literature. He explores the definition of Jewish literature, the relationship between poetry and politics, and the future of literary reputation in the age of the internet. Several essays look at the way Jewish writers such as Stefan Zweig and Isaac Deutscher, who coined the phrase "the non-Jewish Jew," have dealt with politics. Kirsch also examines questions of spirituality and morality in the writings of contemporary poets, including Christian Wiman, Kay Ryan, and Seamus Heaney. He closes by asking why so many American Jewish writers have resisted that category, inviting us to consider "Is there such a thing as Jewish literature?"
Fifteen varied essays discuss the style, language, and vision of Howard Barker, one of Britain's most influential and controversial playwrights. An international range of academics offers illuminating interpretations of his work. Includes analyses of the political, moral, and historical aspects of his writing, its poetry and eroticism, its depiction of the figure of the artist, and Barker's writing in performance.
Everybody knows about Sherlock Holmes, the unique literary character created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who has remained popular over the decades and is more appreciated than ever today. But what made this fictional character, dreamed up by a small-town English doctor back in the 1880s, into such a great success? This is the fascinating and exciting tale of the man and people who created the Holmes legend. It is also the tragic story of an author who tried to escape from his own invention and the inheritance that ruined a family dynasty. The book also charts the unexpected fortune and success of the actors, writers and readers who, over the decades, have recreated and renewed the idea of this most-famous of all detectives: from the gentleman amateur of the 1890s to the odd genius of Sherlock today.
The book was winner of the Best Non-fiction Award by The Swedish Crime Writers' Academy 2013 and shortlisted for The Great Non-Fiction Book Prize (Sweden's biggest non-fiction award) in Sweden 2013.
Jonathan Coe is one of the most popular and critically acclaimed contemporary British writers. This comprehensive introduction places his work in clear historical and theoretical context, offering extensive readings of the author's ten novels from The Accidental Woman to Expo 58, including the remarkable What a Carve Up! The book explores Coe's biography and his experimentations with narrative, genre and comedy, as well as his thematic preoccupations with history, memory, loss and nostalgia. The first volume devoted entirely to Coe, this book includes: * A supporting timeline of key dates in literature and current events * An examination of the critical reception to Coe's works * An exclusive interview with Jonathan Coe himself
Shakespeare and Text is built on the research and experience of a leading expert on Shakespeare editing and textual studies. The first edition of has proved its value as the indispensable and unique guide to its topic. It takes Shakespeare readers to the very foundation of his work, explaining how his plays first took shape in the theatre where writing was part of a larger collective enterprise. The account examines the early modern printing industry that produced the earliest surviving texts of Shakespeare's plays. It describes the roles of publisher and printer, the controls exerted through the Stationers' Company, and the technology of printing. A chapter is devoted to the book that gathered Shakespeare's plays together for the first time, the First Folio of 1623. Shakespeare and Text goes on to survey the major developments in textual studies over the past century. It builds on the recent upsurge of interest in textual theory, and deals with issues such as collaboration, the instability of the text, the relationship between theatre culture and print culture, and the book as a material object. Later chapters examine the current critical edition, explaining the procedures that transform early texts in to a very different cultural artefact, the edition in which we regularly encounter Shakespeare. The new revised edition, which builds on Jowett's research for the New Oxford Shakespeare, engages with scholarship of the past decade, work that has transformed our understanding of textual versions, has opened up the taxonomy of Shakespeare's texts, and has significantly extended the picture of Shakespeare as a co-author. A new chapter describes digital text, digital editing, and their interface with the traditional media.
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.
'A great galloping joy of a book - funny, lyrical, fast paced, heart-warming - a delicious celebration of love and life' Rebecca Stott, author of In the Days of Rain In 1857, after two years of writing The Life of Charlotte Bronte, Elizabeth Gaskell fled England for Rome on the eve of publication. The project had become so fraught with criticism, with different truths and different lies, that Mrs Gaskell couldn't stand it any more. She threw her book out into the world and disappeared to Italy with her two eldest daughters. In Rome she found excitement, inspiration, and love: a group of artists and writers who would become lifelong friends, and a man - Charles Norton - who would become the love of Mrs Gaskell's life, though they would never be together. In 2013, Nell Stevens is embarking on her Ph.D. - about the community of artists and writers living in Rome in the mid-nineteenth century - and falling drastically in love with a man who lives in another city. As Nell chases her heart around the world, and as Mrs Gaskell forms the greatest connection of her life, these two women, though centuries apart, are drawn together. Mrs Gaskell and Me is about unrequited love and the romance of friendship, it is about forming a way of life outside the conventions of your time, and it offers Nell the opportunity - even as her own relationship falls apart - to give Mrs Gaskell the ending she deserved.
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.
The pen is mightier than the sword, but whose pen is the mightiest of them all? Who wrote more, Charlotte Bronte or Fyodor Dostoyevsky? Who created more memorable characters, Jane Austen or William Shakespeare? Whose life was more eventful, Cervantes or Byron? Pit 32 of the greatest writers of all time against each other with these illustrated cards. .
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.
Packed full of analysis and interpretation, historical background, discussions and commentaries, York Notes will help you get right to the heart of the text you're studying, whether it's poetry, a play or a novel. You'll learn all about the historical context of the piece; find detailed discussions of key passages and characters; learn interesting facts about the text; and discover structures, patterns and themes that you may never have known existed. In the Advanced Notes, specific sections on critical thinking, and advice on how to read critically yourself, enable you to engage with the text in new and different ways. Full glossaries, self-test questions and suggested reading lists will help you fully prepare for your exam, while internet links and references to film, TV, theatre and the arts combine to fully immerse you in your chosen text. York Notes offer an exciting and accessible key to your text, enabling you to develop your ideas and transform your studies!
In The Value of Milton, leading critic John Leonard explores the writings of John Milton from his early poetry to his major prose. Milton's work includes one of the most difficult and challenging texts in the English literary canon, yet he remains impressively popular with general readers. Leonard demonstrates why Milton has enduring value for our own time, both as a defender of political liberty and as a poet of sublimity and terror who also exhibits moments of genuine humanity and compassion. A poet divided against himself, Milton offers different rewards to different readers. The Value of Milton examines not only the significance of his most celebrated verse but also the function of biblical allegory, classical culture, and the moods, voice and language that give Milton's writings their perennial appeal.
'This perfect indifference, and your pointed dislike, make it so delightfully absurd!' Pride and Prejudice has delighted generations of readers with its unforgettable cast of characters, carefully choreographed plot, and a hugely entertaining view of the world and its absurdities. With the arrival of eligible young men in their neighbourhood, the lives of Mr and Mrs Bennet and their five daughters are turned inside out and menide down. Pride encounters prejudice, upward-mobility confronts social disdain, and quick-wittedness challenges sagacity, as misconceptions and hasty judgements lead to heartache and scandal, but eventually to true understanding, self-knowledge, and love. In this supremely satisfying story, Jane Austen balances comedy with seriousness, and witty observation with profound insight. If Elizabeth Bennet returns again and again to her letter from Mr Darcy, readers of the novel are drawn even more irresistibly by its captivating wisdom. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
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