This edition of Arthur Mervyn offers selections from key contemporary texts as well as excerpts from Brown's own writings on slavery, race, and the uses of history in fiction.
"This new edition of Arthur Mervyn far exceeds any previous version of this remarkable American novel. Through exhaustive archival research, the editors have produced a reliable text constructed within the intellectual, cultural, political, and religious contexts of a society informing Brown's efforts to capture and preserve the formation of the early republic for generations of readers and cultural historians. This vital text is essential reading for anyone interested in the origins of the United States." --Emory Elliott, University Professor, University of California-Riverside
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Appendices include virtually all of the contemporary sources of exploration and south polar navigation that Poe consulted and adapted to the narrative, together with reviews and notices of Pym and a sampling of responses to the novel from a wide array of authors, from Herman Melville to Jules Verne. Seven illustrations are also included.
The editors’ new introduction helps the reader to negotiate Blithedale’s literary difficulties by offering a detailed reflection on the main problems confronted by past and present interpreters of the novel. Appendices expand on the central historical theme of reform, highlighting the novel’s references to women’s emancipation, antislavery, and Utopian socialism.
A pioneer of the short story genre, Edgar Allan Poe’s stories typically captured themes of the macabre and included elements of the mysterious. His better-known stories include “The Fall of the House of Usher”, “The Pit and the Pendulum”, “The Murders in the Rue Morgue”, “The Masque of the Red Death” and “The Tell-Tale Heart”.
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‘One thing is certain, - that there is a mustering among the masses, the world over; and there is a dis irae coming on, sooner or later.’
Viewed by many as fuelling the abolitionist movement of the 1850s and laying the groundwork for the Civil War, Harriet Beecher Stowe’s sentimental and moral tale of slaves attempting to secure their freedom was one of the most popular books of the nineteenth century. Centred round the long-suffering Uncle Tom, a devout Christian slave who endures cruelty and abuse from his owners, Tom is often celebrated as the first black hero in American fiction who refuses to obey his white masters. With other strong protagonists such as Eliza, a courageous slave who flees to the North with her son when she learns that he is to be sold, Beecher Stowe highlighted the plight of southern slaves and the breaking up of black families. Not without its controversy, more recent criticism has suggested that the novel contributed negatively to the stereotyping of the black community.