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A radical look at Jane Austen as you've never seen her - as a lover of farce, comic theatre and juvenilia. The Genius of Jane Austen celebrates Britain's favourite novelist 200 years after her death and explores why her books make such awesome movies, time after time. Jane Austen loved the theatre. She learned much of her art from a long tradition of English comic drama and took joyous participation in amateur theatricals. Her juvenilia, then Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park and Emma were shaped by the arts of theatrical comedy. Her admiration for drama's dialogue, characterisation, plotting, exits and entrances is why she has been dramatised so successfully on screen in the last twenty years - and these versions are at the centre of her continuing fame, culminating in her celebration on GBP10 note. Austen expert and author of The Real Jane Austen, Paula Byrne looks at stage adaptations of Austen's novels (including one called Miss Elizabeth Bennet by A. A. Milne) to modern classics, including the BBC Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion, Emma Thompson's Sense and Sensibility, and the phenomenally brilliant and successful Clueless, The Genius of Jane Austen presents an Austen not of prim manners and genteel calm, but filled with wild comedy and outrageous behaviour.
Literary history is a problematic and shifting discourse, especially in the multilingual, post-colonial South African situation. In this book, the author draws on his intimate knowledge of documents written in Dutch during the 17th century and the texts that were produced in this language and its variations as it gradually became Afrikaans by the end of the 19th century. A History of South African Literature: Afrikaans Literature 17th-19th centuries brings an important expansion and regeneration of Afrikaans historiography within the context of South African literary history. A History of South African Literature: Afrikaans Literature 17th-19th centuries is divided into three broad historical periods: the Dutch colonial time (1652-1795), British colonial time (first part of the 19th century) and the time of the language movements (latter half of the 19th century). It follows an inclusive approach, discussing and contextualising a wide variety of documents, like travelogues and personal as well as official journals and other "non-literary texts". The thorough analyses of previously neglected works, like those produced at Genadendal, provide a rich and textured image of the history of writing in South Africa.
Prize-winning biographer Leo Damrosch tells the story of “the Club,” a group of extraordinary writers, artists, and thinkers who gathered weekly at a London tavern
In 1763, the painter Joshua Reynolds proposed to his friend Samuel Johnson that they invite a few friends to join them every Friday at the Turk’s Head Tavern in London to dine, drink, and talk until midnight. Eventually the group came to include among its members Edmund Burke, Adam Smith, Edward Gibbon, and James Boswell. It was known simply as “the Club.”
In this captivating book, Leo Damrosch brings alive a brilliant, competitive, and eccentric cast of characters. With the friendship of the “odd couple” Samuel Johnson and James Boswell at the heart of his narrative, Damrosch conjures up the precarious, exciting, and often brutal world of late eighteenth-century Britain. This is the story of an extraordinary group of people whose ideas helped to shape their age, and our own.
'I admire the freshness and attack of her writing, the passion and curiosity that light up the page. The book does something very important - it makes you impatient to see or re-read the plays at once' Hilary Mantel A genius and prophet whose timeless works encapsulate the human condition like no others. A writer who surpassed his contemporaries in vision, originality and literary mastery. Who wrote like an angel, putting it all so much better than anyone else. Is this Shakespeare? Well, sort of. But it doesn't really tell us the whole truth. So much of what we say about Shakespeare is either not true, or just not relevant, deflecting us from investigating the challenges of his inconsistencies and flaws. This electrifying new book thrives on revealing, not resolving, the ambiguities of Shakespeare's plays and their changing topicality. It introduces an intellectually, theatrically and ethically exciting writer who engages with intersectionality as much as with Ovid, with economics as much as poetry: who writes in strikingly modern ways about individual agency, privacy, politics, celebrity and sex. It takes us into a world of politicking and copy-catting, as we watch him emulating the blockbusters of Christopher Marlowe and Thomas Kyd, the Spielberg and Tarantino of their day; flirting with and skirting round the cut-throat issues of succession politics, religious upheaval and technological change. The Shakespeare in this book poses awkward questions rather than offering bland answers, always implicating us in working out what it might mean. This is Shakespeare. And he needs your attention.
'Hitchings is extremely good at unravelling Johnson’s most bullish assertions . . . lucid and empathetic, scholarly but lively. A model Johnsonian, in fact.' The Times
The World in Thirty-Eight Chapters or Dr Johnson’s Guide to Life is a source of profound good sense about what it means to teach, read, write and travel. More than that, though, Henry Hitchings continually translates Samuel Johnson's experience of poverty, scorn, pain and madness into a rich understanding of how to be.
Samuel Johnson was a critic, an essayist, a poet and a biographer. He was also, famously, the compiler of the first good English dictionary, published in 1755. A polymath and a great conversationalist, his intellectual and social curiosity were boundless. Yet he was a deeply melancholy man, haunted by dark thoughts, sickness and a diseased imagination. In his own life, both public and private, he sought to choose a virtuous and prudent path, negotiating everyday hazards and temptations. His writings and aphorisms illuminate what it means to lead a life of integrity, and his experience, abundantly documented by him and by others (such as James Boswell and Hester Thrale), is a lesson in the art of regulating the mind and the body.
Johnson’s story touches on many themes that have enduring significance. He was, and remains, a perceptive commentator on the vanity of human wishes, the rewards and dangers of charity, the need to cultivate kindness, the complexities of family life (especially marriage), the effects of boredom and the fleeting nature of pleasure. He writes and speaks incisively and humanely about the ego, ambition, hypocrisy, fallibility and disorders of the mind, as well as the corrosive effects of obsession, the precariousness of fame and the skulduggery of the literary world.
Why is it bad to spend too much money? In early modern England, the concept of prodigality governed all forms of financial excess and misuse, from gambling away your family estate to buying too much food. To be prodigal was not only to lack self-discipline but to be immorally excessive. Prodigals were foolish, reckless, and sinful, but their lives were also ones of excitement, lust, luxury, and intrigue. Ambivalently positioned between conservative financial ideals and increasingly popular economic indulgences, prodigals embodied a nation's anxieties about the advent of early capitalism. This book analyses the prodigal youth archetype in early modern drama, examining plays by Shakespeare, Middleton, Jonson, Randolph, Chapman, Marston, Beaumont and Fletcher, Davenport, Gascoigne, Heywood, as well as anonymous works and morality plays. The theatres, which were so often criticised for financial excess, became the perfect setting for the rebellious exploits of prodigal youths, and their rises and falls were dramatised with increasing glamorisation between 1500 and 1642. By discussing humanist education practices, Aristotelian ethics, urban change, cuckoldry, usury, and sex work, the author offers the first examination of prodigality and the ways in which England at first condemned, then tolerated, and then eventually came to celebrate excessive spending. EZRA HORBURY is a British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellow in English at University College London.
"Public and Private "was first published in 1997. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
This groundbreaking work examines the emergent and fluctuating relationship between the public and private social spheres of the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. By assessing novels such as Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein" and Jane Austen's "Emma" through the lens of the social theories of Jurgen Habermas and Michel Foucault, Patricia McKee presents a fresh and highly original contribution to literary studies.
McKee explores the themes of production and consumption as they relate to gender and class throughout the works of many of the most influential novels of the age including Tobias Smollett's "Humphry Clinker," Horace Walpole's "The Castle of Otranto," "Emma," "Frankenstein," Anthony Trollope's "Barchester Towers," Charles Dickens's "Little Dorrit" and "The Old Curiosity Shop," Mrs. Henry Wood's "East Lynne," and Thomas Hardy's "The Return of the Native."
McKee analyzes portrayals of a society in which abstract idealism belonged to knowledgeable, productive men and the realm of ignorance was left to emotional, consuming women and the uneducated. She traces the various ways British literature of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries worked to reform this social experience. Topics include Dickens's attack on the bureaucratic use of knowledge to maintain the status quo; the function of antiprogressive depictions of knowledge in Trollope, Shelley, and Hardy; and Austen's characterization of the protagonist Emma as an exception in a society that denied women's productive use of knowledge.
Offering a sharp challenge to theorists who have charted a linear division of public and private experience, McKee highlights the unexpected configurations of the emergence of the public and private spheres and the effect of knowledge distribution across class and gender lines.
Patricia McKee is professor of English at Dartmouth College. She is the author of "Heroic Commitment in Richardson, Eliot, and James" (1986).
A plain, blank stationer's notebook from the 1780s in the Bodleian Library contains some of the most famous juvenilia in all of English literature. Copied out in Jane Austen's youthful hand, Volume the First, which takes its name from the inscription on the cover, preserves the stories, playlets, verses, and moral fragments she wrote during her teenage years. For the first time, the entire manuscript of Volume the First is available in a printed facsimile. In it, we see the young author's delight in language, in expressing ideas and sentiments sharply and economically. We also see Jane Austen learning the craft of genre by closely observing and parodying the popular stories of her day. Kathryn Sutherland's introduction places Jane's Austen's earliest works in context and explains how she mimicked even the style and manner in which these stories were presented and arranged on the page. Clearly the work of a teenager, Volume the First reveals the development of the unmistakable voice and style that would mark out Jane Austen as one of the most popular authors of all time. None of her six famous novels survives in manuscript form. This is a unique opportunity to own a likeness of Jane Austen's hand in the form of a complete manuscript facsimile.
From one of the greatest Shakespeare scholars of our time, Harold Bloom presents Othello's Iago, perhaps the Bard's most compelling villain-the fourth in a series of five short books about the great playwright's most significant personalities. In all of literature, few antagonists have displayed the ruthless cunning and unscrupulous deceit of Iago, the antagonist to Othello. Often described as Machiavellian, Iago is a fascinating psychological specimen: at once a shrewd expert of the human mind and yet, himself a deeply troubled man. One of Shakespeare's most provocative and culturally relevant plays, Othello is widely studied for its complex and enduring themes of race and racism, love, trust, betrayal, and repentance. It remains widely performed across professional and community theatre alike and has been the source for many film and literary adaptations. Now award-winning writer and beloved professor Harold Bloom investigates Iago's motives and unthinkable actions with razor-sharp insight, agility, and compassion. Why and how does Iago uses fake news to destroy Othello and several other characters in his path? What can Othello tell us about racism? Bloom is mesmerizing in the classroom, treating Shakespeare's characters like people he has known all his life. He delivers that kind of exhilarating intimacy and clarity in these pages, writing about his shifting understanding-over the course of his own lifetime-of this endlessly compelling figure, so that Iago also becomes an extraordinarily moving argument for literature as a path to and a measure of our humanity. This is a provocative study for our time.
**Shortlisted for Waterstones Book of the Year** The Penguin Classics Book is a reader's companion to the largest library of classic literature in the world. Spanning 4,000 years from the legends of Ancient Mesopotamia to the poetry of the First World War, with Greek tragedies, Icelandic sagas, Japanese epics and much more in between, it encompasses 500 authors and 1,200 books, bringing these to life with lively descriptions, literary connections and beautiful cover designs.
The 72nd in the annual series of volumes devoted to Shakespeare study and production. The articles are drawn from the programme of the International Shakespeare Conference held in Stratford-upon-Avon in the summer of 2018. The theme is 'Shakespeare and War'.
2015 marks the four hundredth anniversary of the publication of the complete Don Quixote of La Mancha-an ageless masterpiece that is unusually fertile and endlessly adaptable. Flaubert was inspired to turn Emma Bovary into "a knight in skirts". Freud studied Quixote's psyche. Twain was fascinated by it, as were Kafka, Picasso, Nabokov, Borges and Welles. The novel has spawned ballets and operas, poems and plays, films and video games, and even shapes the identities of nations. In Quixote, Ilan Stavans, one of today's pre-eminent cultural commentators, explores these many manifestations. Training his eye on the tumultuous struggle between logic and dreams, he reveals the ways in which a work of literature is a living thing that influences and is influenced by the world around it.
In contemporary France, particularly in the banlieues of Paris, the figure of the young, virile, hypermasculine Muslim looms large. So large, in fact, it often supersedes liberal secular society's understanding of gender and sexuality altogether. Engaging the nexus of race, gender, nation, and sexuality, Sexagon studies the broad politicization of Franco-Arab identity in the context of French culture and its assumptions about appropriate modes of sexual and gender expression, both gay and straight. Surveying representations of young Muslim men and women in literature, film, popular journalism, television, and erotica as well as in psychoanalysis, ethnography, and gay and lesbian activist rhetoric, Mehammed Amadeus Mack reveals the myriad ways in which communities of immigrant origin are continually and consistently scapegoated as already and always outside the boundary of French citizenship regardless of where the individuals within these communities were born. At the same time, through deft readings of-among other things-fashion photography and online hook-up sites, Mack shows how Franco-Arab youth culture is commodified and fetishized to the point of sexual fantasy. Official French culture, as Mack suggests, has judged the integration of Muslim immigrants from North and West Africa-as well as their French descendants-according to their presumed attitudes about gender and sexuality. More precisely, Mack argues, the frustrations consistently expressed by the French establishment in the face of the alleged Muslim refusal to assimilate is not only symptomatic of anxieties regarding changes to a "familiar" France but also indicative of an unacknowledged preoccupation with what Mack identifies as the "virility cultures" of Franco-Arabs, rendering Muslim youth as both sexualized objects and unruly subjects. The perceived volatility of this banlieue virility serves to animate French characterizations of the "difficult" black, Arab, and Muslim boy-and girl-across a variety of sensational newscasts and entertainment media, which are crucially inflamed by the clandestine nature of the banlieues themselves and non-European expressions of virility. Mirroring the secret and underground qualities of "illegal" immigration, Mack shows, Franco-Arab youth increasingly choose to withdraw from official scrutiny of the French Republic and to thwart its desires for universalism and transparency. For their impenetrability, these sealed-off domains of banlieue virility are deemed all the more threatening to the surveillance of mainstream French society and the state apparatus.
The Little Shakespeare Book is the perfect primer to the works of William Shakespeare, packed with witty illustrations and inspirational quotes, now in a handy compact size. This bold book covers every work, from the comedies of Twelfth Night and As You Like It to the tragedies of Julius Caesar and Hamlet, plus lost plays and less well-known works of poetry. Easy-to-understand graphics and illustrations bring the themes, plots, characters and language of Shakespeare to life, including illustrated timelines which offer an at-a-glance summary of the action for each play. With detailed plot summaries and an in-depth analysis of the major characters and themes, this is a brilliant, innovative exploration of the entire canon of Shakespeare plays, sonnets and poetry. Whether you're a Shakespeare scholar or a student of the great Bard, The Little Book of Shakespeare Book offers a fuller appreciation of his phenomenal talent and lasting legacy.
What is the problem of sexual love? Neither inclusive of all aspects of sexuality nor fully synonomous with the idealized mythos of romantic love, sexual love as desire is marked by the highly charged intersection of sexuality and romantic love; it is a space where gender is imagined and enacted.
In "A Craving Vacancy," Susan Ostrov Weisser examines sexuality in the context of changing ideas of romantic love and feminity in Victorian Britain. Focusing her analysis on the works of Samuel Richardson, George Eliot, and Emily and Charlotte Bronte, Weisser reveals the complex relationship between conceptions of romantic passion and ideologies of sexuality. She illuminates the Victorian period as a time when these conceptions were shifting according to changing ideas of gender. With close attention to textual details, she introduces the concept of Moral Femininity, placing it in useful opposition to the competing Victorian ideal of the Lady.
By forging a direct link between sexuality and romantic love ideology in the 19th century, and by highlighting the way in which the literary preoccupation with these subjects arises from anxieties about the construction of gender, "A Craving Vacancy" breaks important new ground.
This collection of essays offers an intimate history of Austen's art and life told through objects associated with her personally and with the era in which she lived. Her teenage notebooks, music albums, pelisse-coat, letters, the homemade booklets in which she composed her novels and the portraits made of her during her life all feature in this lavishly illustrated collection. By interpreting the outrageous literary jokes in her early notebooks we can glimpse the shared reading activities of Jane and her family, together with the love of satire and home entertainment which can be traced in the subtler humour of her mature work. It is well known that Austen played the piano but her music books reveal how music was used to create networks far more intricate than the simple pleasures of home recital. Examination of Austen's pelisse-coat tells us something about her physique and, with the lively letters to her sister Cassandra, gives an insight into her views on fashion. The exploration of yet more objects - the Regency novel, newspaper articles, naval logbooks, and contemporary political cartoons - reveals Austen's filiations with wider social and political worlds. These `things' map the threads connecting her (from India to Bath and from North America to Chawton) to those on the international stage during the wars with France that raged through much of her short life. Finally, this book charts her reputation over the two hundred years since her death, offering fresh interpretations of Jane Austen's changing place in the world.
Why have scholars located the emergence of the novel in
eighteenth-century England? What historical forces and stylistic
developments helped to turn a disreputable type of writing into an
eminent literary form?
surveys major criticism on authors such as Aphra Behn, Daniel
Defoe, Samuel Richardson, Henry Fielding and Jane Austen
Jonathan Swift was a man of contradictions: a man who satirized the powerful but aspired to political greatness, who mocked men's vanity but held himself in high esteem, a religious moralizer famed for his malice - a man sharply aware of humanity's flaws, but no less susceptible to them. As with his acclaimed biography of John Donne, John Stubbs paints a vivid portrait of an extraordinary man and a turbulent period of English and Irish history.
Niccolo Machiavelli taught that political leaders must be prepared to do evil so that good may come of it, and his name has been a byword ever since for duplicity and immorality. Is his sinister reputation deserved? In answering this question Quentin Skinner traces the course of Machiavelli's adult life, from his time as Second Chancellor of the Florentine republic, during which he met with kings, the pope, and the Holy Roman Emperor; to the fall of the republic in 1512; to his death in 1527. It was after the fall of the Republic that Machiavelli composed his main political works: The Prince, the Discourses, and The History of Florence. In this second edition of his Very Short Introduction Skinner includes new material on The Prince, showing how Machiavelli developed his neo-classical political theory, through engaging in continual dialogue with the ancient Roman moralists and historians, especially Cicero and Livy. The aim of political leaders, Machiavelli argues, should be to act virtuously so far as possible, but to stand ready 'to be not good' when this course of action is dictated by necessity. Exploring the pivotal concept of princely virtu to be found in classical and Renaissance humanist texts, Skinner brings new light to Machiavelli's philosophy of a willingness to do whatever may be necessary - whether moral or otherwise -to maintain a position of power. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Arthurian romance in Renaissance France has long been treated by modern critics as marginal - although manuscripts and printed volumes, adaptations and rewritings, show just how much writers, and especially publishers, saw its potential attractions for readers. This book is the first full-length study of what happens to Arthur at the beginning of the age of print. It explores the fascinations of Arthurian romance in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, from the magnificent presentation volumes offered by Antoine Verard or Galliot du Pre in the early years of the century to the perfunctory abbreviated Lancelot published by Benoit Rigaud in Lyon in 1591; from Pierre Sala's dutiful "translation" of Yvain to Jean Maugin's exuberant rewriting of the prose Tristan; from attempts at "new" romance like the little-known Giglan to the runaway best-seller Amadis de Gaule. The book's primary focus is the techniques and stratagems employed by publishers and their workshops to renew Arthurian romance for a new readership: the ways in which the publishers, the translators and the adapters of the Renaissance tailor romance to fit new cultural contexts. Their story - which is the story of the rise and fall of one of the great genres of the Middle Ages - allows privileged insights into socio-cultural and ideological attitudes in the France of the Renaissance, and into issues of literary taste, particular patterns of choice and preference. Jane H.M. Taylor is Emeritus Professor of French at Durham University.
The names Edmund Spenser and John Donne are typically associated with different ages in English poetry, the former with the sixteenth century and the Elizabethan Golden Age, the latter with the 'metaphysical' poets of the seventeenth century. This collection of essays, part of The Manchester Spenser series, brings together leading Spenser and Donne scholars to challenge this dichotomous view and to engage critically with both poets, not only at the sites of direct allusion, imitation, or parody, but also in terms of common preoccupations and continuities of thought, informed by the literary and historical contexts of the politically and intellectually turbulent turn of the century. Juxtaposing these two poets, so apparently unlike one another, for comparison rather than contrast changes our understanding of each poet individually and moves towards a more holistic, relational view of their poetics. -- .
The Changeling by Thomas Middleton and William Rowley is a luridly sensual dramatic work which was highly regarded in its day, but then largely forgotten until its revival three hundred years later. This timely Handbook: * offers a detailed theatrical commentary which tracks the motivations of the capricious characters and explores performance possibilities * examines the cultural conditions that gave rise to the play, juxtaposing them with the conditions of the twentieth century * analyses early performances as well as later stage and film productions * presents key critical debates and assessments of The Changeling.
Angela Thirlwell explores the fictitious life and the many after-lives of Rosalind, Shakespeare's progressive new heroine, and her perennial influence on drama, fiction and art. The book ranges widely across Tudor history, theatre history, sexual politics, autobiography, art history and filmography. This highly original 'biography' of Rosalind - Shakespeare's greatest female creation - contains exclusive new interviews with Juliet Rylance, Sally Scott, Janet Suzman, Juliet Stevenson, Michelle Terry, award-winning director Blanche McIntyre, as well as insights from Michael Attenborough, Kenneth Branagh, Greg Doran, Rebecca Hall, Adrian Lester, Pippa Nixon, Vanessa Redgrave and Fiona Shaw.
Scotland is famed for being a haunted nation, "whare ghaists and houlets nightly cry". Medieval Scots told stories of restless souls and walking corpses, but after the 1560 Reformation, witches and demons became the focal point for explorations of the supernatural. Ghosts re-emerged in scholarly discussion in the late seventeenth century, often in the guise of religious propagandists. As time went on, physicians increasingly reframed ghosts as the conjurations of disturbed minds, but gothic and romantic literature revelled in the emotive power of the returning dead; they were placed against a backdrop of ancient monasteries, castles and mouldering ruins, and authors such as Robert Burns, James Hogg and Walter Scott drew on the macabre to colour their depictions of Scottish life. Meanwhile, folk culture used apparitions to talk about morality and mortality. Focusing on the period from 1685 to 1830, this book provides the first academic study of the history of Scottish ghosts. Drawing on a wide range of sources, and examining beliefs across the social spectrum, it shows how ghost stories achieved a new prominence in a period that is more usually associated with the rise of rationalism. In exploring perceptions of ghosts, it also reflects on understandings of death and the afterlife; the construction of national identity; and the impact of the Enlightenment. MARTHA MCGILL completed her PhD at the University of Edinburgh.
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