Julian West, a feckless aristocrat living in Boston in 1887, plunges into a deep hypnotic sleep. When he wakes up in the year 2000, America has been turned into a rigorously centralized democratic society in which everything is controlled by a humane and efficient state. In little more than a hundred years, the horrors of nineteenth-century capitalism have been all but forgotten. Broad streets have replaced the squalid slums of Boston, and technological inventions have transformed people's everyday lives. Exiled from the past, West excitedly settles into the ideal society of the future, while still fearing that he has dreamt up his experiences as a time traveller.
Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward is a thunderous indictment of industrial capitalism and a resplendent vision of life in a socialist utopia. Matthew Beaumont's lively edition explores the political and psychological peculiarities of this celebrated utopian fiction.
Lyddy: A Tale of the Old South is a fictional reconstruction of antebellum life in the historic Midway community of Liberty County, Georgia, home of some of the Old South's wealthiest planters. Originally published in 1898, this blend of fiction and memoir looks through the eyes of a white plantation mistress at her family plantation, her marriage, slave life, and the destruction of the plantation economy that took place when Sherman's army arrived in December 1864.Writing in response to Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin, Eugenia J. Bacon sought to represent plantation life as she had experienced it. Bacon's story provides a window on slave marriages, the retention of African folklore among coastal Georgia slaves, and the change in relations between masters and slaves after the Civil War. Lucinda H. MacKethan's extensive introduction explores the interwoven contexts of race, class, and gender that make this novel an interesting lens through which to view the complex human relationships that constituted plantation society in the Old South.
"Americans have cherished and magnified versions of an idealized Mark Twain. We admire and are amused by the celebrity, who sold his pseudonym and his carefully composed face to advertise pipe tobacco, cigarettes, whiskey, and postcards. The extent to which the received images are authentic or inauthentic is, however, in doubt. Common images must be modified when we examine the thoughts and emotions important to the mind and heart of Samuel L. Clemens, the private man."--from the Introduction
No writer has been more frequently identified with America than Mark Twain, an emblematic figure often supposed to represent the essential qualities that make America most admirably American. In a fresh appraisal, supported by evidence from both the life and the writings, Guy Cardwell convincingly revises our images of this cultural icon. He portrays an exceptionally complex man who experienced debilitating tensions and neuroses.
Caldwell finds that even before the comedian from the West met and married Olivia Langdon, the heiress from Elmira, New York, he was ambitious to join and conquer the world of Eastern affluence and gentility. Yet Clemens's jokes (in his private notebooks) aggressing against women and blacks suggest that his acculturation to gentility was never complete. This book throws new light on Clemens's relations with his wife and her family and on his attitudes toward business, money, art, sex, and the little girls whose company he sought compulsively during his later years. It argues persuasively that in the end Twain was hardly the robust and genial representative of America's mythic frontier past. Alienated from society and from his own writings, he was much more the prototype of the overstrung, exploitatively individualistic modern American.
The fragility-and the durability-of human life and art dominate this story of American expatriates in Italy in the mid-nineteenth century. Befriended by Donatello, a young Italian with the classical grace of the "Marble Faun," Miriam, Hilda, and Kenyon find their pursuit of art taking a sinister turn as Miriam's unhappy past precipitates the present into tragedy.
Hawthorne's 'International Novel' dramatizes the confrontation of the Old World and the New and the uncertain relationship between the 'authentic' and the 'fake' in life as in art. The author's evocative descriptions of classic sites made The Marble Faun a favorite guidebook to Rome for Victorian tourists, but this richly ambiguous symbolic romance is also the story of a murder, and a parable of the Fall of Man. As the characters find their civilized existence disrupted by the awful consequences of impulse, Hawthorne leads his readers to question the value of Art and Culture and addresses the great evolutionary debate which was beginning to shake Victorian society.
About the Series: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
This Library of America book, with its companion volume, is the most comprehensive collection ever published of Mark Twain's short writings -- the incomparable stories, sketches, burlesques, hoaxes, tall tales, speeches, satires, and maxims of America's greatest humorist. Arranged chronologically and containing many pieces restored to the form in which Twain intended them to appear, the volumes show with unprecedented clarity the literary evolution of Mark Twain over six decades of his career.The nearly two hundred separate items in this volume cover the years from 1852 to 1890. As a riverboat pilot, Confederate irregular, silver miner, frontier journalist, and publisher, Twain witnessed the tragicomic beginning of the Civil War in Missouri, the frenzied opening of the West, and the feverish corruption, avarice, and ambition of the Reconstruction era. He wrote about political bosses, jumping frogs, robber barons, cats, women's suffrage, temperance, petrified men, the bicycle, the Franco-Prussian War, the telephone, the income tax, the insanity defense, injudicious swearing, and the advisability of political candidates preemptively telling the worst about themselves before others get around to it. Among the stories included here are "Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog," which won him instant fame when published in 1865, "Cannibalism in the Cars," "The Invalid's Story," and the charming "A Cat's Tale," written for his daughters' private amusement. This volume also presents several of his famous and successful speeches and toasts, such as "Woman -- God Bless Her," "The Babies," and "Advice to Youth." Such writings brought Twain immense success on the public lecture and banquet circuit, as did his controversial "Whittier Birthday Speech," which portrayed Boston's most revered men of letters as a band of desperadoes. LIBRARY OF AMERICA is an independent nonprofit cultural organization founded in 1979 to preserve our nation's literary heritage by publishing, and keeping permanently in print, America's best and most significant writing. The Library of America series includes more than 300 volumes to date, authoritative editions that average 1,000 pages in length, feature cloth covers, sewn bindings, and ribbon markers, and are printed on premium acid-free paper that will last for centuries.
This book traces the ways in which Mark Twain was formed by, and sought to manipulate, the ideology of gender. Peter Stoneley considers the range of Twain's writing, from classic novels such as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn to embittered autobiographical fragments. Twain's preoccupation with the nature and value of the "feminine" has long been recognized as a central feature of his writing. Stoneley goes beyond repeated generalizations to provide a detailed analysis; his book will be of interest to scholars and students of American literature, cultural history and gender studies.
This superb bibliography unlocks a wealth of early commentary and more recent scholarship relatively inaccessible to English-speaking readers. The generous annotations convey the spirit and essential points of hundreds of books and articles on Twain, making this an important acquisition for every college and university reference collection.
Thomas A. Tenney, Editor, Mark Twain Journal
Mark Twain, one of the most widely published American authors, has enjoyed immense popularity both in the United States and abroad. A fascinating aspect of this popularity is his wide acclaim in German-speaking countries, which stems not only from his literary accomplishments, but also his numerous visits to Europe and his extended stays in Vienna and Berlin.
This book is a comprehensive and extensively annotated bibliography which chronologically surveys Mark Twain's German critical reception from 1875 through 1986. Within each year, items are listed alphabetically by author, and each item is assigned an entry number. English-language annotations accompany each bibliographic citation to assist the reader in ascertaining the flavor and scope of the cited material. Included are monographs, critical texts, reviews, reprints, newspaper articles, dissertations, excerpts from standard literary histories, and introductions and afterwords to editions of his works published in the Federal Republic of Germany, as well as the German Democratic Republic, Austria, and Switzerland. Entries are cross listed, and the volume includes a comprehensive 52-page index. This bibliography provides unique insight into Mark Twain from an often overlooked perspective; it will be of interest to students, scholars, and critics of this great American author, humorist and social critic.
Mark Twain is perhaps the most widely read and enjoyed of all our national writers. This Library of America collection presents his best-known works, together for the first time in one volume.
Tom Sawyer "is simply a hymn," said its author, "put into prose form to give it a worldly air," a book where nostalgia is so strong that it dissolves the tensions and perplexities that assert themselves in the later works. Twain began Huckleberry Finn the same year Tom Sawyer was published, but he was unable to complete it for several more. It was during this period of uncertainty that Twain made a pilgrimage to the scenes of his childhood in Hannibal, Missouri, a trip that led eventually to Life on the Mississippi. The river in Twain's descriptions is a bewitching mixture of beauty and power, seductive calms and treacherous shoals, pleasure and terror, an image of the societies it touches and transports.
Major Carteret is the white owner of the biggest newspaper in Wellington, a racially segregated city in the post-Civil War South. Carteret, along with other powerful white men in Wellington, are outraged that an editorial published the town s black newspaper has questioned the justification for lynchings. As racial tension mounts, Carteret struggles on the domestic front. His wife and child are unwell and his niece, Clara, is courted by Tom Delamer, a lush aristocrat. Meanwhile, William Miller, a young black doctor, returns to hometown of Wellington to set up a practice. Everything comes to a head, however, when a white woman is murdered."