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Warren W. Wooden's pioneering studies of early examples of children's literature throw new light on many accepted works of the English Renaissance period. In consequence, they appear more complex, significant, and successful than hitherto realized. In these nine essays, Wooden traces the roots of English children's literature in the Renaissance beginning with the first printed books of Caxton and ranging through the work of John Bunyan. Wooden examines a number of works and authors from this period of two centuries -- some from the standard canon, others obscure or neglected -- while addressing questions about the early development of children's literature.
Love and Loss in the Memoirs of C. S. Lewis, John Bayley, Donald Hall, Joan Didion, and Calvin Trillen
In Companionship in Grief, Jeffrey Berman focuses on the most life-changing event for many people—the death of a spouse. Some of the most acclaimed memoirs of the past fifty years offer insights into this profound loss: C. S. Lewis’s A Grief Observed; John Bayley’s three memoirs about Iris Murdoch, including Elegy for Iris; Donald Hall’s The Best Day the Worst Day; Joan Didion’s best-selling The Year of Magical Thinking; and Calvin Trillin’s About Alice. These books explore the nature of spousal bereavement, the importance of caregiving, the role of writing in recovery, and the possibility of falling in love again after a devastating loss. Throughout his study, Berman traces the theme of love and loss in all five memoirists’ fictional and nonfictional writings as well as in those of their spouses, who were also accomplished writers. Combining literary studies, grief and bereavement theory, attachment theory, composition studies, and trauma theory, Companionship in Grief will appeal to anyone who has experienced love and loss. Berman’s research casts light on five remarkable marriages, showing how autobiographical stories of love and loss can memorialize deceased spouses and offer wisdom and comfort to readers.
Literature, Emotion, and the Transnational Imagination
Reading transnational American literature from a cognitive perspective, this book argues that our emotional engagements with others—real and imagined—are crucially important for the development of cosmopolitan imaginations.
Essays on Readers, Writers, and Musicians in Postwar America
A highly regarded scholar in the fields of American cultural history and print culture, Joan Shelley Rubin is best known for her writings on the values, assumptions, and anxieties that have shaped American life, as reflected in both “high” culture and the experiences of ordinary people. In this volume, she continues that work by exploring processes of mediation that texts undergo as they pass from producers to audiences, while elucidating as well the shifting, contingent nature of cultural hierarchy. Focusing on aspects of American literary and musical culture in the decades after World War II, Rubin examines the contests between critics and their readers over the authority to make aesthetic judgments; the effort of academics to extend the university outward by bringing the humanities to a wide public; the politics of setting poetic texts to music; the role of ideology in the practice of commissioning and performing choral works; and the uses of reading in the service of both individualism and community. Specific topics include the 1957 attack by the critic John Ciardi on the poetry of Anne Morrow Lindbergh in the Saturday Review; the radio broadcasts of the classicist Gilbert Highet; Dwight Macdonald’s vitriolic depiction of the novelist James Gould Cozzens as a pernicious middlebrow; the composition and reception of Howard Hanson’s “Song of Democracy”; the varied career of musician Gunther Schuller; the liberal humanism of America’s foremost twentieth-century choral conductor, Robert Shaw; and the place of books in the student and women’s movements of the 1960s. What unites these essays is the author's ongoing concern with cultural boundaries, mediation, and ideology--and the contradictions they frequently entail.
The Book Designs of He Hao, 2003-2013
Almost a Hundred Design Projects: Ai Weiwei, Xu Bing, Araki Nobuyoshi, Lin Tianmiao, Wang Gongxin, RongRong & inri, Liu Zheng, Yue Minjun, Miao Xiaochun, Xu Weixin, Zhang Dali, Yang Fudong, Tim Yip, Chen Wenji, Zhan Wang, Yu Hong... An Asian Trend in Contemporary Graphic Design An independent print-media practitioner, He Hao has been working with distinctive and representative artists in the Chinese contemporary art world, including Ai Weiwei, Xu Bing, etc., and designed more than 100 high-quality books and catalogs since 2003. Recording the current state of art development in China, his works have become an archive of significance. He Hao’s practice shows an Asian trend in today’s graphic design: the replacement of transplanted Modernism with a contemporaneity informed by the culture and lifestyle of contemporary China and the East. An independent print-media practitioner, He Hao has been working with distinctive and representative artists in the Chinese contemporary art world, including Ai Weiwei, Xu Bing, etc., and designed more than 100 high-quality books and catalogs since 2003. Recording the current state of art development in China, his works have become an archive of significance. He Hao’s practice shows an Asian trend in today’s graphic design: the replacement of transplanted Modernism with a contemporaneity informed by the culture and lifestyle of contemporary China and the East. He Hao’s designs grow organically from the content. His sole concern is the discovery and presentation of the content, and his designs show no trace of his hand. This approach might best be called “essential design.” — Xu Bing He Hao is a designer infatuated with the dialogue between space and time. Sensitive to both the pressures of history and the endless transformations of all life forms, he remains in deep and focused meditation, a lone sojourner outside the commercial realm. — Bei Dao
Books on Trial from "Madame Bovary" to "Lolita"
In Dirt for Art's Sake, Elisabeth Ladenson recounts the most visible of modern obscenity trials involving scandalous books and their authors. What, she asks, do these often-colorful legal histories have to tell us about the works themselves and about a changing cultural climate that first treated them as filth and later celebrated them as masterpieces?
Ladenson's narrative starts with Madame Bovary (Flaubert was tried in France in 1857) and finishes with Fanny Hill (written in the eighteenth century, put on trial in the United States in 1966); she considers, along the way, Les Fleurs du Mal, Ulysses, The Well of Loneliness, Lady Chatterley's Lover, Tropic of Cancer, Lolita, and the works of the Marquis de Sade. Over the course of roughly a century, Ladenson finds, two ideas that had been circulating in the form of avant-garde heresy gradually became accepted as truisms, and eventually as grounds for legal defense. The first is captured in the formula "art for art's sake"-the notion that a work of art exists in a realm independent of conventional morality. The second is realism, vilified by its critics as "dirt for dirt's sake." In Ladenson's view, the truth of the matter is closer to -dirt for art's sake-"the idea that the work of art may legitimately include the representation of all aspects of life, including the unpleasant and the sordid.
Ladenson also considers cinematic adaptations of these novels, among them Vincente Minnelli's Madame Bovary, Stanley Kubrick's Lolita and the 1997 remake directed by Adrian Lyne, and various attempts to translate de Sade's works and life into film, which faced similar censorship travails. Written with a keen awareness of ongoing debates about free speech, Dirt for Art's Sake traces the legal and social acceptance of controversial works with critical acumen and delightful wit.
A Dialogue Between Writers and Readers
This lively and diverse bilingual collection of essays by writers and critics examines contemporary Canadian literary arts. The perspectives range from highly personal and introspective to scholarly and objective, yet each adds significantly to an understanding of the dialogue between writers and readers. Proceedings from a workshop held at the Calgary Institute for the Humanities during the summer of 1982, the volume includes such contributors as E.D. Blodgett, Jacques Brault, Richard Giguère, D.G. Jones, Myrna Kostash, Peter Stevens, Aritha van Herk, and Christopher Wiseman.
The collection will naturally be of interest to any student of Canadian literature, but the essays also forcefully address, both explicitly and implicitly, the question of a nationalism of the arts, an issue of great importance to performers and critics in many fields.
Written by experts in the field, the essays in this volume examine the early Christian book from a wide range of disciplines: religion, art history, history, Near Eastern studies, and classics.
English in Print from Caxton to Shakespeare to Milton examines the history of early English books, exploring the concept of putting the English language into print with close study of the texts, the formats, the audiences, and the functions of English books. Lavishly illustrated with more than 130 full-color images of stunning rare books, this volume investigates a full range of issues regarding the dissemination of English language and culture through printed works, including the standardization of typography, grammar, and spelling; the appearance of popular literature; and the development of school grammars and dictionaries. Valerie Hotchkiss and Fred C. Robinson provide engaging descriptions of more than a hundred early English books drawn from the Rare Book & Manuscript Library at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and the Elizabethan Club of Yale University. The study nearly mirrors the chronological parameters of Pollard and Redgraves famous Short-Title Catalogue (1475-1640), beginning with William Caxton, Englands first printer, and ending with John Milton, the English languages most eloquent defender of the freedom of the press. William Shakespeare earns his central place in this study because Shakespeare imprints, and Renaissance drama in general, provide a fascinating window on English printing in the period between Caxton and Milton.