Italo Calvino’s beloved cosmicomics cross planets and traverse galaxies, speed up time or slow it down to the particles of an instant. Through the eyes of an ageless guide named Qfwfq, Calvino explores natural phenomena and tells the story of the origins of the universe. Poignant, fantastical, and wise, these thirty-four dazzling stories — collected here in one definitive anthology — relate complex scientific and mathematical concepts to our everyday world. They are an indelible (and unfailingly delightful) literary achievement.
“Nimble and often hilarious . . . Trying to describe such a diverse and entertaining mix, I have to admit, just as Calvino does so often, that my words fail here, too. There’s no way I — or anyone, really — can muster enough of them to quite capture the magic of these stories . . . Read this book, please.” — Colin Dwyer, NPR
The 26th president of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919) served as Chief Executive from 1901 to 1909 and was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1906 for his mediation of the Russo-Japanese War. Roosevelt wrote 35 books and delivered numerous lectures on topics ranging from citizenship and success to duty and sportsmanship. His 1899 address to a Chicago audience, "The Strenuous Life," articulates his belief in the transformative powers that individuals can achieve by overcoming hardship. Along with the other speeches and essays in this collection, Roosevelt's work offers an inspiring vision of moral rectitude and stalwart leadership.
Written over the course of 1904-1906, Soseki Natsume's comic masterpiece, I Am a Cat, satirizes the foolishness of upper-middle-class Japanese society during the Meiji era. With acerbic wit and sardonic perspective, it follows the whimsical adventures of a world-weary stray kitten who comments on the follies and foibles of the people around him.
A classic of Japanese literature, I Am a Cat is one of Soseki's best-known novels. Considered by many as the greatest writer in modern Japanese history, Soseki's I Am a Cat is a classic novel sure to be enjoyed for years to come.
Set in the time of Charlemagne and narrated by a nun with her own secrets to keep, The Nonexistent Knight tells the story of Agilulf, a gleaming white suit of armor with nothing inside it. A challenge to his honor sends Agilulf on a search through France, England, and North Africa to confirm the chastity of a virgin he saved from rape years earlier. In the end, after many surprising turns of plot, a closing confession draws this sparkling novella to a perfect finish.
In a battle against the Turks, Viscount Medardo of Terralba is bisected lengthwise by a cannonball. One half of him returns to his feudal estate and takes up a lavishly evil life. Soon the other, virtuous half appears. When the two halves become rivals for the love of the same woman, there’s no telling the lengths each will go to win.
Now available in an independent volume for the first time, this deliciously bizarre novella is Calvino at his most devious and winning.
While many books can be enjoyed for their basic stories, there are often deeper literary meanings interwoven in these texts. How to Read Literature Like a Professor helps us to discover those hidden truths by looking at literature with the eyes—and the literary codes—of the ultimate professional reader: the college professor.
What does it mean when a literary hero travels along a dusty road? When he hands a drink to his companion? When he's drenched in a sudden rain shower? Ranging from major themes to literary models, narrative devices, and form, Thomas C. Foster provides us with a broad overview of literature—a world where a road leads to a quest, a shared meal may signify a communion, and rain, whether cleansing or destructive, is never just a shower—and shows us how to make our reading experience more enriching, satisfying, and fun.
This revised edition includes new chapters, a new preface, and a new epilogue, and incorporates updated teaching points that Foster has developed over the past decade.
If on a Winter's Night a Traveler turns out to be not one novel but ten, each with a different plot, style, ambience, and author, and each interrupted at a moment of suspense. Together they form a labyrinth of literatures, known and unknown, alive and extinct, through which two readers, a male and a female, pursue both the story lines that intrigue them and one another.
n important milestone came in 1927 when, for the first time, a novelist was invited to speak: E.M. Forster had recently published his masterpiece, A Passage to India, and rose to the occasion, delivering eight spirited and penetrating lectures on the novel.
The decision to accept the lectureship was a difficult one for Forster. He had deeply ambivalent feelings about the use of criticism. Although suspecting that criticism was somewhat antithetical to creation, and upset by the thought that time spent on the lectures took away from his own work, Forster accepted. His talks were witty and informal, and consisted of sharp penetrating bursts of insight rather than overly-methodical analysis. In short, they were a great success. Gathered and published later as Aspects of the Novel, the ideas articulated in his lectures would gain widespread recognition and currency in twentieth century criticism.
Of all of the insights contained within Aspects of the Novel, none has been more influential or widely discussed than Forster's discussion of "flat" and "round" characters. So familiar by now as to seem commonplace, Forster's distinction is meant to categorize the different qualities of characters in literature and examine the purposes to which they are put. Still, it would be wrong to reduce this book to its most famous line of argument and enquiry. Aspects of the Novel also discusses the difference between story and plot, the characteristics of prophetic fiction, and narrative chronology. Throughout, Forster draws on his extensive readings in English, French, and Russian literature, and discusses his ideas in reference to such figures as Joyce, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, James, Sterne, Defoe, and Proust.
In Difficult Loves, Italy’s master storyteller weaves tales in which cherished deceptions and illusions of love—including self-love—are swept away in magical instants of recognition. A soldier is reduced to quivering fear by the presence of a full-figured woman in his train compartment; a young clerk leaves a lady’s bed at dawn; a young woman is isolated from bathers on a beach by the loss of her bikini bottom. Each of them discovers hidden truths beneath the surface of everyday life.
This is the first edition in English to present the collection as Calvino originally envisioned it, and includes two stories newly translated by Ann Goldstein.
This new edition includes a new introduction and conclusion as well as extensive updates throughout. Topics covered include globalization, new grassroots movements (including Occupy Wall Street), the environmental crisis, and the relationship between Marxism and postcolonial studies. Loomba also discusses how ongoing struggles such as those of indigenous peoples, and the enclosure of the commons in different parts of the world shed light on the long histories of colonialism. This edition also has extensive discussions of temporality, and the relationship between premodern, colonial and contemporary forms of racism. This books includes:key features of the ideologies and history of colonialism the relationship of colonial discourse to literature anticolonial thought and movements challenges to colonialism, including anticolonial discourses recent developments in postcolonial theories and histories issues of sexuality and colonialism, and the intersection of feminist and postcolonial thought the relationship of activist struggles and scholarship.
Colonialism/Postcolonialism is the essential introduction to a vibrant and politically charged area of literary and cultural study. It is the ideal guide for students new to colonial discourse theory, postcolonial studies or postcolonial theory as well as a reference for advanced students and teachers.
Italo Calvino’s unbounded curiosity and masterly imagination are displayed in peak form in Collection of Sand, the last of his works published during his lifetime. Here he applies his graceful intellect to the delights of the visual world, in essays on subjects ranging from cuneiform and antique maps to Mexican temples and Japanese gardens. Never before translated into English, Collection of Sand is an incisive and often surprising meditation on observation and knowledge, the difference between the world as we perceive it and the world as it is.
“Beautifully translated by Martin McLaughlin . . . To read [Collection of Sand] is to enter the presence of an exceptionally fervent and fertile mind . . . A brilliant collection that may change the way you see the world around you.” — PD Smith, Guardian
A printer and newspaper editor in his youth, Garvey furthered his education in England and eventually traveled to the United States, where he impressed thousands with his speeches and millions more through his newspaper articles. His message of black pride resonated in all his efforts. This anthology contains some of his most noted writings, among them “The Negro’s Greatest Enemy,” "Declaration of the Rights of the Negro Peoples of the World," and "Africa for the Africans," as well as powerful speeches on unemployment, leadership, and emancipation.
Essential reading for students of African-American history, this volume will also serve as a useful reference for anyone interested in the history of the civil rights movement.
In a garden sit the aged Kublai Khan and the young Marco Polo — Mongol emperor and Venetian traveler. Kublai Khan has sensed the end of his empire coming soon. Marco Polo diverts his host with stories of the cities he has seen in his travels around the empire: cities and memory, cities and desire, cities and designs, cities and the dead, cities and the sky, trading cities, hidden cities. As Marco Polo unspools his tales, the emperor detects these fantastic places are more than they appear.
“Invisible Cities changed the way we read and what is possible in the balance between poetry and prose . . . The book I would choose as pillow and plate, alone on a desert island.” — Jeanette Winterson
From the National Book Award–winning author of Just Kids: an unforgettable odyssey of a legendary artist, told through the prism of the cafés and haunts she has worked in around the world. It is a book Patti Smith has described as “a roadmap to my life.”
M Train begins in the tiny Greenwich Village café where Smith goes every morning for black coffee, ruminates on the world as it is and the world as it was, and writes in her notebook. Through prose that shifts fluidly between dreams and reality, past and present, and across a landscape of creative aspirations and inspirations, we travel to Frida Kahlo’s Casa Azul in Mexico; to a meeting of an Arctic explorer’s society in Berlin; to a ramshackle seaside bungalow in New York’s Far Rockaway that Smith acquires just before Hurricane Sandy hits; and to the graves of Genet, Plath, Rimbaud, and Mishima.
Woven throughout are reflections on the writer’s craft and on artistic creation. Here, too, are singular memories of Smith’s life in Michigan and the irremediable loss of her husband, Fred Sonic Smith.
Braiding despair with hope and consolation, illustrated with her signature Polaroids, M Train is a meditation on travel, detective shows, literature, and coffee. It is a powerful, deeply moving book by one of the most remarkable multiplatform artists at work today.
From the Hardcover edition.
Classics, according to Italo Calvino, are not only works of enduring cultural value, but also something much more personal: talismans, touchstones, books through which we understand our world and ourselves. In Why Read the Classics?, Calvino shares over thirty of his classics in essays of warmth, humor, and striking insight. He ranges from Homer to Jorge Luis Borges, from the Persian folklorist Nezami to Charles Dickens. Whether tracing the links between Ovid’s Metamorphoses and Alain Robbe-Grillet’s objectivity, discovering the origins of science fiction in the writings of Cyrano de Bergerac, or convincing us that the Italian novelist Carlo Emilio Gadda’s works are like artichokes, Calvino offers a new perspective on beloved favorites and introduces us to hidden gems.
“This book serves as a welcome reminder that the great works are great because they can mean so much to readers, and Calvino is a most knowledgeable guide to all the best destinations.” —San Francisco Chronicle
An inquisitive observer, thoughtful commentator, and assiduous craftsman, Neil Gaiman has long been celebrated for the sharp intellect and startling imagination that informs his bestselling fiction. Now, The View from the Cheap Seats brings together for the first time ever more than sixty pieces of his outstanding nonfiction. Analytical yet playful, erudite yet accessible, this cornucopia explores a broad range of interests and topics, including (but not limited to): authors past and present; music; storytelling; comics; bookshops; travel; fairy tales; America; inspiration; libraries; ghosts; and the title piece, at turns touching and self-deprecating, which recounts the author’s experiences at the 2010 Academy Awards in Hollywood.
Insightful, incisive, witty, and wise, The View from the Cheap Seats explores the issues and subjects that matter most to Neil Gaiman—offering a glimpse into the head and heart of one of the most acclaimed, beloved, and influential artists of our time.
These intoxicating stories delve down to the core of our senses of taste, hearing, and smell. Amid the flavors of Mexico’s fiery chiles and spices, a couple on holiday discovers dark truths about the maturing of desire in the title story, “Under the Jaguar Sun.” In “A King Listens,” a gripping portrait of a frenzied mind, the menacing echoes in a huge palace spur a tyrant’s thoughts to the heights of paranoid intensity. “The Name, the Nose” drives to a startling conclusion as men across time and space pursue the women whose aromas have enchanted them. Mordant and deliciously offbeat, this trio of tales is a treat from a master of short fiction.
“[Calvino is] a learned, daring, ingeniously gifted magus . . . Under the Jaguar Sun . . . fuses fable with neuron . . . The reader is likely to salivate.” — Cynthia Ozick, New York Times Book Review
Chuck Klosterman has created an incomparable body of work in books, magazines, newspapers, and on the Web. His writing spans the realms of culture and sports, while also addressing interpersonal issues, social quandaries, and ethical boundaries. Klosterman has written nine previous books, helped found and establish Grantland, served as the New York Times Magazine Ethicist, worked on film and television productions, and contributed profiles and essays to outlets such as GQ, Esquire, Billboard, The A.V. Club, and The Guardian.
Chuck Klosterman's tenth book (aka Chuck Klosterman X) collects his most intriguing of those pieces, accompanied by fresh introductions and new footnotes throughout. Klosterman presents many of the articles in their original form, featuring previously unpublished passages and digressions. Subjects include Breaking Bad, Lou Reed, zombies, KISS, Jimmy Page, Stephen Malkmus, steroids, Mountain Dew, Chinese Democracy, The Beatles, Jonathan Franzen, Taylor Swift, Tim Tebow, Kobe Bryant, Usain Bolt, Eddie Van Halen, Charlie Brown, the Cleveland Browns, and many more cultural figures and pop phenomena. This is a tour of the past decade from one of the sharpest and most prolific observers of our unusual times.
That’s the question Will Schwalbe asks his mother, Mary Anne, as they sit in the waiting room of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. In 2007, Mary Anne returned from a humanitarian trip to Pakistan and Afghanistan suffering from what her doctors believed was a rare type of hepatitis. Months later she was diagnosed with a form of advanced pancreatic cancer, which is almost always fatal, often in six months or less.
This is the inspiring true story of a son and his mother, who start a “book club” that brings them together as her life comes to a close. Over the next two years, Will and Mary Anne carry on conversations that are both wide-ranging and deeply personal, prompted by an eclectic array of books and a shared passion for reading. Their list jumps from classic to popular, from poetry to mysteries, from fantastic to spiritual. The issues they discuss include questions of faith and courage as well as everyday topics such as expressing gratitude and learning to listen. Throughout, they are constantly reminded of the power of books to comfort us, astonish us, teach us, and tell us what we need to do with our lives and in the world. Reading isn’t the opposite of doing; it’s the opposite of dying.
Will and Mary Anne share their hopes and concerns with each other—and rediscover their lives—through their favorite books. When they read, they aren’t a sick person and a well person, but a mother and a son taking a journey together. The result is a profoundly moving tale of loss that is also a joyful, and often humorous, celebration of life: Will’s love letter to his mother, and theirs to the printed page.
This eBook edition includes a Reading Group Guide.
This witty collection of essays recounts a lifelong love affair with books and language. For Fadiman, as for many passionate readers, the books she loves have become chapters in her own life story. Writing with remarkable grace, she revives the tradition of the well-crafted personal essay, moving easily from anecdotes about Coleridge and Orwell to tales of her own pathologically literary family. As someone who played at blocks with her father's 22-volume set of Trollope ("My Ancestral Castles") and who only really considered herself married when she and her husband had merged collections ("Marrying Libraries"), she is exquisitely well equipped to expand upon the art of inscriptions, the perverse pleasures of compulsive proof-reading, the allure of long words, and the satisfactions of reading out loud. There is even a foray into pure literary gluttony--Charles Lamb liked buttered muffin crumbs between the leaves, and Fadiman knows of more than one reader who literally consumes page corners. Perfectly balanced between humor and erudition, Ex Libris establishes Fadiman as one of our finest contemporary essayists.
Written between 1943 and 1984, the stories in Numbers in the Dark span the career of one of fiction’s modern masters: from Italo Calvino’s earliest fables, to tales informed by life in World War II–era Italy, to the delightful experimentation that would define his later work. Here are speculative stories on life in the digital age, genre-bending wonders, and “impossible interviews” with the likes of Montezuma and a Neanderthal. Deftly translated by Tim Parks, Numbers in the Dark shows off Calvino’s lifelong gift for subtle humor and shimmering philosophical insight.
“Numbers in the Dark is a glorious grab-bag . . . [with] enough gems from every phase in Calvino’s career to make it feel indispensable.” — Seattle Times
In this delightful and original book, Jonathan Gottschall offers the first unified theory of storytelling. He argues that stories help us navigate life’s complex social problems—just as flight simulators prepare pilots for difficult situations. Storytelling has evolved, like other behaviors, to ensure our survival.
Drawing on the latest research in neuroscience, psychology, and evolutionary biology, Gottschall tells us what it means to be a storytelling animal. Did you know that the more absorbed you are in a story, the more it changes your behavior? That all children act out the same kinds of stories, whether they grow up in a slum or a suburb? That people who read more fiction are more empathetic?
Of course, our story instinct has a darker side. It makes us vulnerable to conspiracy theories, advertisements, and narratives about ourselves that are more “truthy” than true. National myths can also be terribly dangerous: Hitler’s ambitions were partly fueled by a story.
But as Gottschall shows in this remarkable book, stories can also change the world for the better. Most successful stories are moral—they teach us how to live, whether explicitly or implicitly, and bind us together around common values. We know we are master shapers of story. The Storytelling Animal finally reveals how stories shape us.
In The Late Henry Moss–which premiered in San Francisco, starring Sean Penn and Nick Nolte–two estranged brothers confront the past as they piece together the drunken fishing expedition that preceded their father’s death. In Eyes for Consuela, based on Octavio Paz’s classic story “The Blue Bouquet,” a vacationing American encounters a knife-toting Mexican bandit on a gruesome quest. And in When the World Was Green, cowritten with Joseph Chaikin, a journalist in search of her father interviews an old man who resolved a generations-old vendetta by murdering the wrong man. Together, these plays form a powerful trio from an enduring force in American theater.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
In 1940, the prolific author and historian Philip Van Doren Stern produced this volume as a guide to Lincoln's life through his writings. Stern's "Life of Abraham Lincoln" is a full biography of the man and includes a detailed chronology. Stern has collected all the essential texts of Lincoln's public life, from his first public address—a stump speech in New Salem, Illinois, in 1832 for an election he went on to lose—to his last piece of public writing, a pass to a congressman who was to visit the president the day after Lincoln went to Ford's Theater on April 14, 1865. Some 275 such documents are collected and placed in their historical context. Together with the "Life" and the Introduction, "Lincoln in His Writings," by noted historian Allan Nevins, they give a full and vivid picture of Abraham Lincoln.
In these autobiographical essays, published after Italo Calvino’s death, the intellectually vibrant writer not only reflects on his own past, but also inquires into the very workings of memory itself. From the title essay’s lyrical evocation of the author’s relationship with his father, and a charming account of teenage years spent in the glow of the cinema screen, to Calvino’s reminiscences of his experiences in the Italian Resistance during World War II and of his years in Paris, to his declaration of purpose as a writer in the final essay’s visionary fragments, these five “memory exercises” are heartfelt, affecting, and wise.
“Brimming with Calvino’s beautifully crafted prose, dry humor, and continual questioning . . . Calvino has been very well served by his translator, Tim Parks.” —Observer
From the "Hundred Best Books" to the "Ten Greatest Thinkers" to the "Ten Greatest Poets," here is a concise collection of the world's most significant knowledge. For the better part of a century, Will Durant dwelled upon -- and wrote about -- the most significant eras, individuals, and achievements of human history. His selections have finally been brought together in a single, compact volume. Durant eloquently defends his choices of the greatest minds and ideas, but he also stimulates readers into forming their own opinions, encouraging them to shed their surroundings and biases and enter "The Country of the Mind," a timeless realm where the heroes of our species dwell.
From a thinker who always chose to exalt the positive in the human species, The Greatest Minds and Ideas of All Time stays true to Durant's optimism. This is a book containing the absolute best of our heritage, passed on for the benefit of future generations. Filled with Durant's renowned wit, knowledge, and unique ability to explain events and ideas in simple and exciting terms, this is a pocket-size liberal arts and humanist curriculum in one volume.
This posthumously published collection offers a unique, puzzle-like portrait of one of the postwar era’s most inventive and mercurial writers. In letters and journals, occasional pieces and interviews, Italo Calvino recalls growing up in seaside Italy and fighting in the antifascist resistance during World War II, traces the course of his literary career, and reflects on his many travels, including a journey through the United States in 1959 and 1960 that brings out his droll wit at its best. Sparkling with wisdom and unexpected delights, Hermit in Paris is an autobiography like no other.
“Surprising, tart, and distinctive, like [Calvino] himself.” — Philadelphia Inquirer
Straddling the series’ dominant themes of sex and power, Ardeur gives Anita fans a deeper look into the dynamics, both personal political, that have kept readers fascinated throughout the run of the series. Why is the ardeur the very best thing that could have happened to Anita, personally (aside from all the sex it requires her to have with hot men)? How is Anita’s alternate United States a logical legal extension of our own? And as the series continues, what other bargains might Anita have to make with herself and others in order to keep the people she loves safe from harm?
The collection includes essay introductions by Hamilton, giving context and extra insight into each essay’s subject.
These three stories, set during the summer of 1940, draw on Italo Calvino’s memories of his own adolescence during the Second World War, too young to be forced to fight in Mussolini’s army but old enough to be conscripted into the Italian youth brigades. The callow narrator of these tales observes the mounting unease of a city girding itself for war, the looting of an occupied French town, and nighttime revels during a blackout. Appearing here in its first English translation, Into the War is one of Calvino’s only works of autobiographical fiction. It offers both a glimpse of this writer’s extraordinary life and a distilled dram of his wry, ingenious literary voice.
“All three stories attest to the potentially magical, transformative space of adolescence . . . The seeds of the later Calvino — the fabulist who worked profound moral and ethical points into his narratives — are all here.” — Joseph Luzzi, Times Literary Supplement
“A valuable tool for exploring the series. Both newcomers and frequent visitors to Mid-World will be informed and delighted.”—Stephen King
The story of Roland Deschain of Gilead, the last gunslinger, and his lifelong quest to reach the tower and save humanity across infinite parallel worlds is one that has consumed Stephen King throughout his career as characters and concepts crossed back and forth between the series and the rest of his fictional universe.
The Dark Tower Companion is the ultimate compendium to King’s evolving magnum opus, presenting the mythology, history, and geography of this epic fantasy that has captivated generations of readers. Featuring interviews with Stephen King, Ron Howard, Dark Tower expert Robin Furth and others, Bev Vincent reveals The Dark Tower’s influential literary origins, examines its connections to the vast majority of King’s other novels, explores the expanded universe, catalogs the major characters, locations and concepts, and includes a travel guide to the story’s real-world locations, giving fans who have followed Roland’s journey—or those who are discovering it for the first time—a fascinating overview of the series and an inside look at the creative process of one of the world’s most popular authors.
Anger, Mercy, Revenge comprises three key writings: the moral essays On Anger and On Clemency—which were penned as advice for the then young emperor, Nero—and the Apocolocyntosis, a brilliant satire lampooning the end of the reign of Claudius. Friend and tutor, as well as philosopher, Seneca welcomed the age of Nero in tones alternately serious, poetic, and comic—making Anger, Mercy, Revenge a work just as complicated, astute, and ambitious as its author.
For thirty years Karr has also taught the form, winning teaching prizes at Syracuse. (The writing program there produced such acclaimed authors as Cheryl Strayed, Keith Gessen, and Koren Zailckas.) In The Art of Memoir, she synthesizes her expertise as professor and therapy patient, writer and spiritual seeker, recovered alcoholic and “black belt sinner,” providing a unique window into the mechanics and art of the form that is as irreverent, insightful, and entertaining as her own work in the genre.
Anchored by excerpts from her favorite memoirs and anecdotes from fellow writers’ experience, The Art of Memoir lays bare Karr’s own process. (Plus all those inside stories about how she dealt with family and friends get told— and the dark spaces in her own skull probed in depth.) As she breaks down the key elements of great literary memoir, she breaks open our concepts of memory and identity, and illuminates the cathartic power of reflecting on the past; anybody with an inner life or complicated history, whether writer or reader, will relate.
Joining such classics as Stephen King’s On Writing and Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird, The Art of Memoir is an elegant and accessible exploration of one of today’s most popular literary forms—a tour de force from an accomplished master pulling back the curtain on her craft.
Throughout his stories, Calvino delights in discovering hidden truths beneath the surface of everyday life. Blending reality and illusion with elegance and precision, the tales in this collection take place in a World War II–era and postwar Italy tinged with visionary and fablelike qualities. Three novice burglars accidentally break into a pastry shop; a pair of children trespass upon a forbidden garden; a wealthy family invites a rustic goatherd to lunch, only to mock him. In the title story, a compact masterpiece of shifting perspectives, a panicked soldier tries to keep his wits—and his life—when he faces off against a young partisan with a loaded rifle and miraculous aim.
Stories from Last Comes the Raven have been published in translation, but the collection as a whole has never appeared in English. This volume, including several stories newly translated by Ann Goldstein, is an important addition to Calvino’s legacy.
We Are the Change We Seek is a collection of Barack Obama's 27 greatest addresses: beginning with his 2002 speech opposing the Iraq War and closing with his emotional farewell address in Chicago in January 2017. As president, Obama's words had the power to move the country, and often the world, as few presidents before him. Whether acting as Commander in Chief or Consoler in Chief, Obama adopted a unique rhetorical style that could simultaneously speak to the national mood and change the course of public events. Obama's eloquence, both written and spoken, propelled him to national prominence and ultimately made it possible for the son of a Kenyan man and a white woman from Kansas to become the first black president of the United States.
These speeches span Obama's career--from his time in state government through to the end of his tenure as president--and the issues most important to our time: war, inequality, race relations, gun violence and human rights. The book opens with an essay placing Obama's oratorical contributions within the flow of American history by E.J. Dionne Jr., columnist and author of Why The Right Went Wrong, and Joy Reid, the host of AM Joy on MSNBC and author of Fracture.
Vampires, ghosts, and other horrors abound in this collection of nineteenth-century fantastic literature, selected and edited by Italo Calvino, a twentieth-century master of the speculative. This posthumously published anthology of enchanting, uncanny, terrifying, and immortally entertaining short stories includes E.T.A. Hoffmann’s “The Sandman,” Nikolai Gogol’s “The Nose,” Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart,” Robert Louis Stevenson’s “The Bottle Imp,” and many more, each with an introduction by Calvino. Fantastic Tales is a delight for the mind and a feast for the senses.
“Impressive and utterly pleasing . . . Each story [Calvino] picks is absorbing, unique, and continually surprising.” — Los Angeles Times
In 1970, Stephen King embarked on what would become the crowning achievement in his literary career-the Dark Tower. The seven-volume series, written and published over a period of 30 years, was inspired by Robert Browning's poem "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came," as well as J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, and the spaghetti Westerns of Sergio Leone.
With the full cooperation of Stephen King himself, The Road to the Dark Tower examines the epic journey of the author to complete a story that threatened to overwhelm him. In this indispensable companion, Bev Vincent presents a book-by-book analysis of each volume in the series, tracing the Dark Tower's connections to King's other novels including The Stand, Insomnia, and Hearts in Atlantis, and offering insights from the author about the creative process involved in crafting his lifelong work-a work that has consumed not only Stephen King, but his legion of devoted readers. This is essential reading for any Dark Tower-or Stephen King-fan.
Darling is only ten years old, and yet she must navigate a fragile and violent world. In Zimbabwe, Darling and her friends steal guavas, try to get the baby out of young Chipo's belly, and grasp at memories of Before. Before their homes were destroyed by paramilitary policemen, before the school closed, before the fathers left for dangerous jobs abroad.
But Darling has a chance to escape: she has an aunt in America. She travels to this new land in search of America's famous abundance only to find that her options as an immigrant are perilously few. NoViolet Bulawayo's debut calls to mind the great storytellers of displacement and arrival who have come before her--from Junot Diaz to Zadie Smith to J.M. Coetzee--while she tells a vivid, raw story all her own.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
From the Chicago neighborhoods where she grew up and set her groundbreaking The House on Mango Street to her abode in Mexico in a region where “my ancestors lived for centuries,” the places Sandra Cisneros has lived have provided inspiration for her now-classic works of fiction and poetry. But a house of her own, where she could truly take root, has eluded her. With this collection—spanning three decades, and including never-before-published work—Cisneros has come home at last.
Ranging from the private (her parents’ loving and tempestuous marriage) to the political (a rallying cry for one woman’s liberty in Sarajevo) to the literary (a tribute to Marguerite Duras), and written with her trademark lyricism, these signature pieces recall transformative memories as well as reveal her defining artistic and intellectual influences. Poignant, honest, deeply moving, this is an exuberant celebration of a life in writing lived to the fullest.
From the Hardcover edition.
The longest and most delightfully revealing section of the book is Calvino’s diary of his travels in the United States in 1959 and 1960, which show him marveling at color TV, wrinkling his nose at the Beats, and reeling at the outpouring of racial hatred attending a civil rights demonstration in Alabama. Overflowing with insight and amusement, Hermit in Paris is an invaluable addition to the Calvino legacy.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
—Roy Blount Jr.
“Language lovers will flock to this homage to great writing.”
Outspoken New York Times columnist Stanley Fish offers an entertaining, erudite analysis of language and rhetoric in this delightful celebration of the written word. Drawing on a wide range of great writers, from Philip Roth to Antonin Scalia to Jane Austen and beyond, Fish’s How to Write a Sentence is much more than a writing manual—it is a penetrating exploration into the art and craft of sentences.
Now he treats his legion of fans to Some Remarks, an enthralling collection of essays—Stephenson’s first nonfiction work since his long essay on technology, In the Beginning…Was the Command Line, more than a decade ago—as well as new and previously published short writings both fiction and non.
Some Remarks is a magnificent showcase of a brilliantly inventive mind and talent, as he discourses on everything from Sir Isaac Newton to Star Wars.
Other memorable orations include Powhatan's "Why should you destroy us, who have provided you with food?" (1609); Red Jacket's "We like our religion, and do not want another" (1811); Osceola's "I love my home, and will not go from it" (1834); Red Cloud's "The Great Spirit made us both" (1870); Chief Joseph's "I will fight no more forever" (1877); Sitting Bull's "The life my people want is a life of freedom" (1882); and many more. Other notable speakers represented here include Tecumseh, Seattle, Geronimo, and Crazy Horse, as well as many lesser-known leaders.
Graced by forceful metaphors and vivid imagery expressing emotions that range from the utmost indignation to the deepest sorrow, these addresses are deeply moving documents that offer a window into the hearts and minds of Native Americans as they struggled against the overwhelming tide of European and American encroachment. This inexpensive edition, with informative notes about each speech and orator, will prove indispensable to anyone interested in Native American history and culture.
Hayot does more than explain the techniques of academic writing. He aims to adjust the writer's perspective, encouraging scholars to think of themselves as makers and doers of important work. Scholarly writing can be frustrating and exhausting, yet also satisfying and crucial, and Hayot weaves these experiences, including his own trials and tribulations, into an ethos for scholars to draw on as they write. Combining psychological support with practical suggestions for composing introductions and conclusions, developing a schedule for writing, using notes and citations, and structuring paragraphs and essays, this guide to the elements of academic style does its part to rejuvenate scholarship and writing in the humanities.
Creating a speech can be a hard task when you have never tried giving one. It can also be very difficult when you are not used to writing one. Fortunately, this guide is made to solve the problem. This will be your ultimate guide towards writing and giving speeches that will be remembered by everybody.
Let your speech be an inspiration of the newlywed couple.
The Literature Book is a fascinating journey through the greatest works of world literature, from the Iliad to Don Quixote to The Great Gatsby. Around 100 crystal-clear articles explore landmark novels, short stories, plays, and poetry that reinvented the art of writing in their time, whether Ancient Greece, post-classical Europe, or modern-day Korea.
As part of DK's award-winning Big Ideas Simply Explained series, The Literature Book uses infographics and images to explain key ideas and themes. Biographies of important authors offer insight into their lives and other writings, and a section on Further Reading details more than 150 additional works to explore.
Discover masterpieces from the world's greatest authors, and explore the context, creative history, and literary traditions that influenced each major work of fiction with The Literature Book.
The Complete Stephen King Universe is the only definitive reference work that examines all of Stephen King's novels, short stories, motion pictures, miniseries, and teleplays, and deciphers the threads that exist in all of his work. This ultimate resource includes in-depth story analyses, character breakdowns, little-known facts, and startling revelations on how the plots, themes, characters, and conflicts intertwine.
After discovering The Complete Stephen King Universe, you will never read Stephen King the same way again.
Conceived nearly a century ago by a man who died believing himself a failure, it's now a revered classic and a rite of passage in the reading lives of millions. But how well do we really know The Great Gatsby? As Maureen Corrigan, Gatsby lover extraordinaire, points out, while Fitzgerald's masterpiece may be one of the most popular novels in America, many of us first read it when we were too young to fully comprehend its power.
Offering a fresh perspective on what makes Gatsby great-and utterly unusual-So We Read On takes us into archives, high school classrooms, and even out onto the Long Island Sound to explore the novel's hidden depths, a journey whose revelations include Gatsby's surprising debt to hard-boiled crime fiction, its rocky path to recognition as a "classic," and its profound commentaries on the national themes of race, class, and gender.
With rigor, wit, and infectious enthusiasm, Corrigan inspires us to re-experience the greatness of Gatsby and cuts to the heart of why we are, as a culture, "borne back ceaselessly" into its thrall. Along the way, she spins a new and fascinating story of her own.
Winner of the Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize
A frank and fascinating exploration of race and racial identity
Notes from No Man's Land: American Essays begins with a series of lynchings and ends with a series of apologies. Eula Biss explores race in America and her response to the topic is informed by the experiences chronicled in these essays -- teaching in a Harlem school on the morning of 9/11, reporting for an African American newspaper in San Diego, watching the aftermath of Katrina from a college town in Iowa, and settling in Chicago's most diverse neighborhood.
As Biss moves across the country from New York to California to the Midwest, her essays move across time from biblical Babylon to the freedman's schools of Reconstruction to a Jim Crow mining town to post-war white flight. She brings an eclectic education to the page, drawing variously on the Eagles, Laura Ingalls Wilder, James Baldwin, Alexander Graham Bell, Joan Didion, religious pamphlets, and reality television shows.
These spare, sometimes lyric essays explore the legacy of race in America, artfully revealing in intimate detail how families, schools, and neighborhoods participate in preserving racial privilege. Faced with a disturbing past and an unsettling present, Biss still remains hopeful about the possibilities of American diversity, "not the sun-shininess of it, or the quota-making politics of it, but the real complexity of it."