“The history of Shakespeare in America,” writes James Shapiro in his introduction to this groundbreaking anthology, “is also the history of America itself.” Shakespeare was a central, inescapable part of America’s literary inheritance, and a prism through which crucial American issues—revolution, slavery, war, social justice—were refracted and understood. In tracing the many surprising forms this influence took, Shapiro draws on many genres—poetry, fiction, essays, plays, memoirs, songs, speeches, letters, movie reviews, comedy routines—and on a remarkable range of American writers from Emerson, Melville, Lincoln, and Mark Twain to James Agee, John Berryman, Pauline Kael, a...
First published in 1955, The Violent Bear It Away is now a landmark in American literature. It is a dark and absorbing example of the Gothic sensibility and bracing satirical voice that are united in Flannery O'Conner's work. In it, the orphaned Francis Marion Tarwater and his cousins, the schoolteacher Rayber, defy the prophecy of their dead uncle--that Tarwater will become a prophet and will baptize Rayber's young son, Bishop. A series of struggles ensues: Tarwater fights an internal battle against his innate faith and the voices calling him to be a prophet while Rayber tries to draw Tarwater into a more "reasonable" modern world. Both wrestle with the legacy of their dead relatives and lay claim to Bishop's soul. O'Connor observes all this with an astonishing combination of irony and compassion, humor and pathos. The result is a novel whose range and depth reveal a brilliant and innovative writers acutely alert to where the sacred lives and to where it does not.
Author and activist McKibben gathers the essential American writings that changed the way the public looks at the natural world. "American Earth" features essays by Walt Whitman, Rachel Carson, Barbara Kingsolver, Michael Pollan, and dozens more.
A single-volume collection of essential writings features Thoreau's best poetry and essays on nature, materialism, conformity, and politics, including such works as "Slavery in Massachusetts," "Civil Disobedience," "A Winter Walk," "Life Without Principle," and others.
The Judeo-Persian manuscripts that Iranian Jews produced between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries provide a thorough description of their intellectual parameters. They demonstrates the Jews deep attachment to Judaism as well as their profound acculturation in Iran."