View your shopping cart.

Essays

ABC OF READING

ABC OF READING

By: Pound, Ezra
$15.95
More Info
This important work, first published in 1934, is a concise statement of Pound's aesthetic theory. It is a primer for the reader who wants to maintain an active, critical mind and become increasingly sensitive to the beauty and inspiration of the world's best literature. With characteristic vigor and iconoclasm, Pound illustrates his precepts with exhibits meticulously chosen from the classics, and the concluding "Treatise on Meter" provides an illuminating essay for anyone aspiring to read and write poetry. ABC of Reading displays Pound's great ability to open new avenues in literature for our time.
AMERICAN STUDIES

AMERICAN STUDIES

By: Menand, Louis
$22.00
More Info

At each step of this journey through American cultural history, Louis Menand has an original point to make: he explains the real significance of William James's nervous breakdown, and of the anti-Semitism in T. S. Eliot's writing. He reveals the reasons for the remarkable commercial successes of William Shawn's New Yorker and William Paley's CBS. He uncovers the connection between Larry Flynt's Hustler and Jerry Falwell's evangelism, between the atom bomb and the Scholastic Aptitude Test. He locates the importance of Richard Wright, Norman Mailer, Pauline Kael, Christopher Lasch, and Rolling Stone magazine. And he lends an ear to Al Gore in the White House as the Starr Report is finally presented to the public.

Like his critically acclaimed bestseller, The Metaphysical Club, American Studies is intellectual and cultural history at its best: game and detached, with a strong curiosity about the political underpinnings of ideas and about the reasons successful ideas insinuate themselves into the culture at large. From one of our leading thinkers and critics, known both for his "sly wit and reportorial high-jinks [and] clarity and rigor" (The Nation), these essays are incisive, surprising, and impossible to put down.

AN OPEN BOOK

AN OPEN BOOK

By: Dirda, Michael
$14.95
More Info

"All that kid wants to do is stick his nose in a book," Michael Dirda's steelworker father used to complain, worried about his son's passion for reading. In "An Open Book," one of the most delightful memoirs to emerge in years, the acclaimed literary journalist Michael Dirda re-creates his boyhood in rust-belt Ohio, first in the working-class town of Lorain, then at Oberlin College. In addition to his colorful family and friends, "An Open Book" also features the great writers and fictional characters who fueled Dirda's imagination: from Green Lantern to Sherlock Holmes, from Candy to Proust. The result is an affectionate homage to small-town America summer jobs, school fights, sweepstakes contests, and first dates as well as a paean to what could arguably be called the last great age of reading. "Dirda is a superb literary essayist." Harold Bloom "Michael Dirda's memoir no surprise to me is so good that I went up to the attic meaning to send him one of my antique Big Little books as a salute to excellence...A great job. I'll be buying "An Open Book" for my children and grandchildren." Russell Baker, author of "Growing Up" "Here, in "An Open Book," is the show and tell of a wonderful American story, everything coming together in the immemorial dance of literature and memory, of history and gossip, and of the deeply felt, bittersweet story (his own) of a young life. Read it and rejoice." George Garrett "A lovely, unapologetically nostalgic remembrance of growing up in a more innocent America, but it is also the touching story of one person's lifelong love affair with words." June Sawyer, "San Francisco Chronicle" "Dirda inhabits each book he reads. Inhabits it and makes a space alongside it for us to join him....He is a rare treasure." James Sallis, "Boston Sunday Globe""

ANATOMY OF INFLUENCE: Literature as a Way of Life

ANATOMY OF INFLUENCE: Literature as a Way of Life

By: Bloom, Harold
$22.00
More Info

Our most revered critic returns to his signature theme

"Literary criticism, as I attempt to practice it," writes Harold Bloom in The Anatomy of Influence, "is in the first place literary, that is to say, personal and passionate."

For more than half a century, Bloom has shared his profound knowledge of the written word with students and readers. In this, his most comprehensive and accessible study of influence, Bloom leads us through the labyrinthine paths which link the writers and critics who have informed and inspired him for so many years. The result is "a critical self-portrait," a sustained meditation on a life lived with and through the great works of the Western canon: Why has influence been my lifelong obsessive concern? Why have certain writers found me and not others? What is the end of a literary life?

Featuring extended analyses of Bloom's most cherished poets--Shakespeare, Whitman, and Crane--as well as inspired appreciations of Emerson, Tennyson, Browning, Yeats, Ashbery, and others, The Anatomy of Influence adapts Bloom's classic work The Anxiety of Influence to show us what great literature is, how it comes to be, and why it matters. Each chapter maps startling new literary connections that suddenly seem inevitable once Bloom has shown us how to listen and to read. A fierce and intimate appreciation of the art of literature on a scale that the author will not again attempt, TheAnatomy of Influence follows the sublime works it studies, inspiring the reader with a sense of something ever more about to be.

ANGELS AND SAINTS: WITH A GUIDE TO THE ILLUSTRATIONS BY MARY WELLESLEY

ANGELS AND SAINTS: WITH A GUIDE TO THE ILLUSTRATIONS BY MARY WELLESLEY

By: Weinberger, Eliot
$26.95
More Info
Angels have soared through Western culture and consciousness from Biblical to contemporary times. But what do we really know about these celestial beings? Where do they come from, what are they made of, how do they communicate and perceive? The celebrated essayist Eliot Weinberger has mined and deconstructed, resurrected and distilled centuries of theology into an awe-inspiring exploration of the heavenly host.
From a litany of angelic voices, Weinberger's lyrical meditation then turns to the earthly counterparts, the saints, their lives retold in a series of vibrant and playful capsule biographies, followed by a glimpse of the afterlife.
Threaded throughout Angels & Saints are the glorious illuminated grid poems by the eighteenth-century Benedictine monk Hrabanus Maurus. These astonishingly complex, proto-"concrete" poems are untangled in a lucid afterword by the medieval scholar and historian Mary Wellesley.
ANOTHER TURN OF THE CRANK

ANOTHER TURN OF THE CRANK

By: Berry, Wendell
$13.95
More Info
A Kentucky farmer and writer, and perhaps the great moral essayist of our day, Berry has produced one of his shortest but also most powerful volumes. --The New York Review of Books

From modern health care to the practice of forestry, from local focus to national resolve, Wendell Berry argues, there can never be a separation between global ecosystems and human communities--the two are intricately connected, and the health and survival of one depends upon the other.

Provocative, intimate, and thoughtful, Another Turn of the Crank reaches to the heart of Berry's concern and vision for the future, for America and for the world.

The rarest (and highest) of literary classes consist of that small group of authors who are absolutely inimitable . . . One of the half-dozen living American authors who belongs in this class is Wendell Berry. --Los Angeles Times

Berry is a philosopher, poet, novelist, and an essayist in the tradition of Emerson and Thoreau . . . like Thoreau, he marches to a different drummer, a drummer we would do well to be aware of, if not to march to. --San Francisco Chronicle

ART OF PERSONAL ESSAY: AN ANTHOLOGY FROM THE CLASSICAL ERA TO THE PRESENT

ART OF PERSONAL ESSAY: AN ANTHOLOGY FROM THE CLASSICAL ERA TO THE PRESENT

By: Lopate, Phillip
$22.00
More Info
For more than four hundred years the personal essay has been one of the richest and most vibrant of all literary forms. The Art of the Personal Essay is the first anthology to celebrate this lively, fertile genre. Distinguished from the formal essay by its friendly, conversational tone, its drive toward candor and confession, and its often quirky first-person voice, the personal essay offers above all a feast of individuality.
ART OF THE SONNET

ART OF THE SONNET

By: Mikics, David
$19.95
More Info

Few poetic forms have found more uses than the sonnet in English, and none is now more recognizable. It is one of the longest-lived of verse forms, and one of the briefest. A mere fourteen lines, fashioned by intricate rhymes, it is, as Dante Gabriel Rossetti called it, "a moment's monument." From the Renaissance to the present, the sonnet has given poets a superb vehicle for private contemplation, introspection, and the expression of passionate feelings and thoughts.

The Art of the Sonnet collects one hundred exemplary sonnets of the English language (and a few sonnets in translation), representing highlights in the history of the sonnet, accompanied by short commentaries on each of the poems. The commentaries by Stephanie Burt and David Mikics offer new perspectives and insights, and, taken together, demonstrate the enduring as well as changing nature of the sonnet. The authors serve as guides to some of the most-celebrated sonnets in English as well as less-well-known gems by nineteenth- and twentieth-century poets. Also included is a general introductory essay, in which the authors examine the sonnet form and its long and fascinating history, from its origin in medieval Sicily to its English appropriation in the sixteenth century to sonnet writing today in the United States, the United Kingdom, and other English-speaking parts of the world.

BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS

BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS

$8.00
More Info
Unfortunately, on occasions too frequent and destructive to enumerate, the teachings of Christ have been either ignored or distorted by the very people calling themselves Christian. Whether directed towards social intolerance or attitudes of warlike aggression, these right-wing citizens have claimed a power of influence that far exceeds their numbers. Blessed Are the Peacemakers collects the sayings of Jesus, selected by Wendell Berry, who contributes an essay of introduction. This is a book of inspiration and prayerful compassion, a ringing call to action at a time when our country and the world it once led stand at a dangerous crossroads.
BOOK

BOOK

By: Borsuk, Amaranth
$15.95
More Info
The book as object, as content, as idea, as interface.

What is the book in a digital age? Is it a physical object containing pages encased in covers? Is it a portable device that gives us access to entire libraries? The codex, the book as bound paper sheets, emerged around 150 CE. It was preceded by clay tablets and papyrus scrolls. Are those books? In this volume in the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series, Amaranth Borsuk considers the history of the book, the future of the book, and the idea of the book. Tracing the interrelationship of form and content in the book's development, she bridges book history, book arts, and electronic literature to expand our definition of an object we thought we knew intimately.

Contrary to the many reports of its death (which has been blamed at various times on newspapers, television, and e-readers), the book is alive. Despite nostalgic paeans to the codex and its printed pages, Borsuk reminds us, the term "book" commonly refers to both medium and content. And the medium has proved to be malleable. Rather than pinning our notion of the book to a single form, Borsuk argues, we should remember its long history of transformation. Considering the book as object, content, idea, and interface, she shows that the physical form of the book has always been the site of experimentation and play. Rather than creating a false dichotomy between print and digital media, we should appreciate their continuities.

BOOK THAT CHANGED MY LIFE

BOOK THAT CHANGED MY LIFE

By: Johannessen, Joy
$11.00
More Info
Now in paperback, a delightful collection of essays on the transformative power of reading In The Book That Changed My Life, our most admired writers, doctors, professors, religious leaders, politicians, chefs, and CEO s share the books that mean the most to them. For Doris Kearns Goodwin it was Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August, which inspired her to enter a field, history writing, traditionally reserved for men. For Jacques Pépin it was The Myth of Sisyphus, which taught him the importance of personal responsibility, dignity, and goodness in the midst of existentialist France. A testament to the life-altering importance of literature, this book inspires us to return to old favorites and seek out new treasures. All proceeds go to The Read to Grow Foundation, which partners with urban hospitals to provide books and literacy information to newborns and their families.
CASE FOR BOOKS: Past, Present, and Future

CASE FOR BOOKS: Past, Present, and Future

By: Darnton, Robert
$13.95
More Info
The invention of writing was one of the most important technological, cultural, and sociological breakthroughs in human history. With the printed book, information and ideas could disseminate more widely and effectively than ever before -- and in some cases, affect and redirect the sway of history. Today, nearly one million books are published each year. But is the era of the book as we know it -- a codex of bound pages -- coming to an end? And if it is, should we celebrate its demise and the creation of a democratic digital future, or mourn an irreplaceable loss? The digital age is revolutionizing the information landscape. Already, more books have been scanned and digitized than were housed in the great library in Alexandria, making available millions of texts for a curious reader at the click of a button, and electronic book sales are growing exponentially. Will this revolution in the delivery of information and entertainment make for more transparent and far-reaching dissemination or create a monopolistic stranglehold?

In The Case for Books, Robert Darnton, an intellectual pioneer in the field of the history of the book and director of Harvard University's Library, offers an in-depth examination of the book from its earliest beginnings to its shifting role today in popular culture, commerce, and the academy. As an author, editorial advisor, and publishing entrepreneur, Darnton is a unique authority on the life and role of the book in society. This book is a wise work of scholarship -- one that requires readers to carefully consider how the digital revolution will broadly affect the marketplace of ideas.

CHANCE MEETING

CHANCE MEETING

By: Cohen, Rachel
$14.95
More Info
Each chapter of this inventive consideration of American culture evokes an actual meeting between American writers and artists, from Henry James and Mathew Brady, to Mark Twain and Ulysses S. Grant, to Elizabeth Bishop and Marianne Moore, to Norman Mailer and Robert Lowell. The accumulation of these pairings draws the reader into the mysterious process by which creativity has been sparked and passed on, from the Civil War through the civil rights movement.
CONVERSATION

CONVERSATION

By: Miller, Stephen
$17.00
More Info

Essayist Stephen Miller pursues a lifelong interest in conversation by taking an historical and philosophical view of the subject. He chronicles the art of conversation in Western civilization from its beginnings in ancient Greece to its apex in eighteenth-century Britain to its current endangered state in America. As Harry G. Frankfurt brought wide attention to the art of bullshit in his recent bestselling "On Bullshit," so Miller now brings the art of conversation into the light, revealing why good conversation matters and why it is in decline.

CROSSING BORDERS: STORIES AND ESSAYS ABOUT TRANSLATION

CROSSING BORDERS: STORIES AND ESSAYS ABOUT TRANSLATION

$17.95
More Info
A collection of stories and essays about translating and translators

What an astonishing collection, it seemed as if I could drink it--these pieces exude such humanness, refer effortlessly to the tender place that exists in between languages, and somehow leave you with both everything and nothing to say. --Ella Frances Sanders, author of Lost in Translation

In Joyce Carol Oates's story The Translation, a traveler to an Eastern European country falls in love with a woman he gets to know through an interpreter. In Lydia Davis's French Lesson I: Le Meurtre, what begins as a lesson in beginner's French takes a sinister turn. In the essay On Translating and Being Translated, Primo Levi addresses the joys and difficulties awaiting the translator. Lynne Sharon Schwartz's Crossing Borders: Stories and Essays About Translation gathers together thirteen stories and five essays that explore the compromises, misunderstandings, traumas, and reconciliations we act out and embody through the art of translation.

CULTURAL AMNESIA

CULTURAL AMNESIA

By: James, Clive
$17.95
More Info

This international bestseller is an encyclopedic A-Z masterpiece--the perfect introduction to the very core of Western humanism. Clive James rescues, or occasionally destroys, the careers of many of the greatest thinkers, humanists, musicians, artists, and philosophers of the twentieth century. Soaring to Montaigne-like heights, Cultural Amnesia is precisely the book to burnish these memories of a Western civilization that James fears is nearly lost.

product image

CULTURAL COHESION: THE ESSENTIAL ESSAYS

By: James, Clive
$21.95
More Info
Six years after the much-heralded publication of Cultural Amnesia, Clive James presents his "prequel"--forty-nine essays that he has selected as the best of his half-century career. Originally appearing as As of This Writing, Cultural Cohesion examines the twisted cultural terrain of the twentieth century in one of the most accessible and cohesive volumes available. Divided into four sections--"Poetry," "Fiction and Literature," "Culture and Criticism," and "Visual Images"--James comments on poets like W. H. Auden and Phillip Larkin, novelists like D. H. Lawrence and Raymond Chandler (not to mention Judith Krantz!), and filmmakers like Fellini and Bogdanovich. Throughout, James delights his readers with his manic energy and critical aplomb. This volume, featuring a new introduction, is a one-volume cultural education that few recent books can rival.
DAEMON KNOWS: LITERARY GREATNESS AND THE AMERICAN SUBLIME

DAEMON KNOWS: LITERARY GREATNESS AND THE AMERICAN SUBLIME

By: Bloom, Harold
$20.00
More Info

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST AND KIRKUS REVIEWS

Hailed as "the indispensable critic" by The New York Review of Books, Harold Bloom--New York Times bestselling writer and Sterling Professor of Humanities at Yale University--has for decades been sharing with readers and students his genius and passion for understanding literature and explaining why it matters. Now he turns at long last to his beloved writers of our national literature in an expansive and mesmerizing book that is one of his most incisive and profoundly personal to date. A product of five years of writing and a lifetime of reading and scholarship, The Daemon Knows may be Bloom's most masterly book yet.

Pairing Walt Whitman with Herman Melville, Ralph Waldo Emerson with Emily Dickinson, Nathaniel Hawthorne with Henry James, Mark Twain with Robert Frost, Wallace Stevens with T. S. Eliot, and William Faulkner with Hart Crane, Bloom places these writers' works in conversation with one another, exploring their relationship to the "daemon"--the spark of genius or Orphic muse--in their creation and helping us understand their writing with new immediacy and relevance. It is the intensity of their preoccupation with the sublime, Bloom proposes, that distinguishes these American writers from their European predecessors.

As he reflects on a lifetime lived among the works explored in this book, Bloom has himself, in this magnificent achievement, created a work touched by the daemon.

Praise for The Daemon Knows

"Enrapturing . . . radiant . . . intoxicating . . . Harold Bloom, who bestrides our literary world like a willfully idiosyncratic colossus, belongs to the party of rapture."--Cynthia Ozick, The New York Times Book Review

"The capstone to a lifetime of thinking, writing and teaching . . . The primary strength of The Daemon Knows is the brilliance and penetration of the connections Bloom makes among the great writers of the past, the shrewd sketching of intellectual feuds or oppositions that he calls agons. . . . Bloom's books are like a splendid map of literature, a majestic aerial view that clarifies what we cannot see from the ground."--The Washington Post

"Audacious . . . The Yale literary scholar has added another remarkable treatise to his voluminous body of work."--The Huffington Post

"The sublime The Daemon Knows is a veritable feast for the general reader (me) as well as the advanced (I assume) one."--John Ashbery

"Mesmerizing."--New York Journal of Books

"Bloom is a formidable critic, an extravagant intellect."--Chicago Tribune

"As always, Bloom conveys the intimate, urgent, compelling sense of why it matters that we read these canonical authors."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"Few people write criticism as nakedly confident as Bloom's any more."--The Guardian (U.K.)

Deadline Artists: America's Greatest Newspaper Columnists

Deadline Artists: America's Greatest Newspaper Columnists

By: Louis, Errol
$17.95
More Info
Now in its fifth hardcover printing, Deadline Artists celebrates the relevance of the newspaper column through the simple power of excellent writing. It is an inspiration for a new generation of writers-- whether their medium is print or digital--looking to learn from the best of their predecessors. Contributors include: Jimmy Breslin, Ernie Pyle, Dorothy Thompson, Thomas L. Friedman, David Brooks, Ernest Hemingway, Will Rogers, Langston Hughes, Woody Guthrie, Ambrose Bierce, Mark Twain, H.L. Mencken, Art Buchwald, William F. Buckley, Dave Barry, Anna Quindlen, George Will, and Pete Hamill.
DEGREE OF MASTERY

DEGREE OF MASTERY

By: Wilcox, Annie Tremmel
$12.95
More Info
In this extraordinary memoir, certain to captivate anyone who's ever appreciated the feel of a good book, Annie Tremmel Wilcox deftly explores the artistry, traditions, and precise techniques of book making and restoration. Using excerpts from her diaries, newspaper articles, exhibit notices, and correspondence, Wilcox passionately recounts her experiences learning the art of making and preserving books as the first female apprentice to the renowned book binder and conservator William Anthony. At once rendering a gorgeous, moving scrapbook of her tutelage under this consummate craftsman, and expertly demystifing the fascinating technical processes of this centuries-old art form, A Degree of Mastery is a singular achievement certain to enchant book lovers and crafts-people alike.
DEVIL AND SHERLOCK HOMES: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession

DEVIL AND SHERLOCK HOMES: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession

By: Grann, David
$15.95
More Info
From the bestselling author of Killers of the Flower Moon comes this "gripping" (The Miami Herald) and "hilarious" (EW) collection of true crime mysteries about people whose obsessions propel them into unfathomable and often deadly circumstances.

Whether David Grann is investigating a mysterious murder, tracking a chameleon-like con artist, or hunting an elusive giant squid, he has proven to be one of the most gifted reporters and storytellers of his generation. In The Devil and Sherlock Holmes, Grann takes the reader around the world, revealing a gallery of rogues and heroes with their own particular fixations who show that truth is indeed stranger than fiction.

product image

DOSTOYEVSKY READS HEGEL IN SIBERIA AND BURSTS INTO TEARS

By: Foldenyi, Laszlo F
$26.00
More Info
An exemplary collection of work from one of the world's leading scholars of intellectual history

László Földényi's work, in the long tradition of public intellectual and cultural criticism, resonates with the writings of Montaigne, Walter Benjamin, and Thomas Mann. In this new essay collection, Földényi considers the continuing fallout from the collapse of religion, exploring how Enlightenment traditions have not replaced basic elements of previously held religious mythologies--neither their metaphysical completeness nor their comforting purpose. Realizing beautiful writing through empathy, imagination, fascination, and a fierce sense of justice, Földényi covers a wide range of topics including a meditation on the metaphysical unity of a sculpture group and an analysis of fear as a window into our relationship with time.

DRESS YOUR FAMILY IN CORDUROY AND DENIM

DRESS YOUR FAMILY IN CORDUROY AND DENIM

By: Sedaris, David
$16.00
More Info
David Sedaris plays in the snow with his sisters. He goes on vacation with his family. He gets a job selling drinks. He attends his brother's wedding. He mops his sister's floor. He gives directions to a lost traveler. He eats a hamburger. He has his blood sugar tested. It all sounds so normal, doesn't it? In his newest collection of essays, David Sedaris lifts the corner of ordinary life, revealing the absurdity teeming below its surface. His world is alive with obscure desires and hidden motives -- a world where forgiveness is automatic and an argument can be the highest form of love. Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim is another unforgettable collection from one of the wittiest and most original writers at work today.
EARTHBOUND

EARTHBOUND

By: Baumann, Ken
$14.95
More Info
An RPG for the Super NES that flopped when it first arrived in the U.S., EarthBound grew in fan support and critical acclaim over the years, eventually becoming the All-Time Favorite Game of thousands, among them author Ken Baumann.

Featuring a heartfelt foreword from the game's North American localization director, Marcus Lindblom, Baumann's EarthBound is a joyful tornado of history, criticism, and memoir.

Baumann explores the game's unlikely origins, its brilliant creator, its madcap plot, its marketing failure, its cult rise from the ashes, and its intersections with Japanese and American culture, all the while reflecting back on the author's own journey into the terrifying and hilarious world of adults.
EDGE OF THE PRECIPICE: WHY READ LITERATURE IN THE DIGITAL AGE

EDGE OF THE PRECIPICE: WHY READ LITERATURE IN THE DIGITAL AGE

By: Socken, Paul
$19.95
More Info
Can a case be made for reading literature in the digital age? Does literature still matter in this era of instant information? Is it even possible to advocate for serious, sustained reading with all manner of social media distracting us, fragmenting our concentration, and demanding short, rapid communication? In The Edge of the Precipice, Paul Socken brings together a thoughtful group of writers, editors, philosophers, librarians, archivists, and literary critics from Canada, the US, France, England, South Africa, and Australia to contemplate the state of literature in the twenty-first century. Including essays by outstanding contributors such as Alberto Manguel, Mark Kingwell, Lori Saint-Martin, Sven Birkerts, Katia Grubisic, Drew Nelles, and J. Hillis Miller, this collection presents a range of perspectives about the importance of reading literature today. The Edge of the Precipice is a passionate, articulate, and entertaining collection that reflects on the role of literature in our society and asks if it is now under siege. Contributors include Michael Austin (Newman University), Sven Birkerts (author), Stephen Brockmann (Carnegie-Mellon University), Vincent Giroud (University of Franche-Comt?), Katia Grubisic (poet), Mark Kingwell (University of Toronto), Alberto Manguel (author), J. Hillis Miller (University of California, Irvine), Drew Nelles (editor-in-chief, Maisonneuve), Keith Oatley (University of Toronto), Ekaterina Rogatchevskaia (British Library), Leonard Rosmarin (Brock University), Lori Saint-Martin (translator), Paul Socken (University of Waterloo), and Gerhard van der Linde (University of South Africa).
ESSAYISM: ON FORM, FEELING, AND NONFICTION

ESSAYISM: ON FORM, FEELING, AND NONFICTION

By: Dillon, Brian
$15.95
More Info
A compelling ode to the essay form and the great essaysists themselves, from Montaigne to Woolf to Sontag.

Essayism is a book about essays and essayists, a study of melancholy and depression, a love letter to belle-lettrists, and an account of the indispensable lifelines of reading and writing. Brian Dillon's style incorporates diverse features of the essay. By turns agglomerative, associative, digressive, curious, passionate, and dispassionate, his is a branching book of possibilities, seeking consolation and direction from Michel de Montaigne, Virginia Woolf, Roland Barthes, Theodor Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Georges Perec, Elizabeth Hardwick, and Susan Sontag, to name just a few of his influences. Whether he is writing on origins, aphorisms, coherence, vulnerability, anxiety, or a number of other subjects, his command of language, his erudition, and his own personal history serve not so much to illuminate or magnify the subject as to discover it anew through a kaleidoscopic alignment of attention, thought, and feeling, a dazzling and momentary suspension of disparate elements, again and again.

ESSAYS

ESSAYS

By: Orwell, George
$42.00
More Info

A generous and varied selection-the only hardcover edition available-of the literary and political writings of one of the greatest essayists of the twentieth century.

Although best known as the author of Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-four, George Orwell left an even more lastingly significant achievement in his voluminous essays, which dealt with all the great social, political, and literary questions of the day and exemplified an incisive prose style that is still universally admired. Included among the more than 240 essays in this volume are Orwell's famous discussion of pacifism, "My Country Right or Left"; his scathingly complicated views on the dirty work of imperialism in "Shooting an Elephant"; and his very firm opinion on how to make "A Nice Cup of Tea."

In his essays, Orwell elevated political writing to the level of art, and his motivating ideas-his desire for social justice, his belief in universal freedom and equality, and his concern for truth in language-are as enduringly relevant now, a hundred years after his birth, as ever.

ESSAYS IN HONOR OF ROBERT BART

$10.00
More Info
FARAWAY NEARBY

FARAWAY NEARBY

By: Solnit, Rebecca
$17.00
More Info
From the author of the memoir Recollections of My Nonexistence, a personal, lyrical narrative about storytelling and empathy - a fitting companion to Solnit's A Field Guide to Getting Lost

A finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award

In this exquisitely written book by the author of A Paradise Built in Hell, Rebecca Solnit explores the ways we make our lives out of stories, and how we are connected by empathy, by narrative, by imagination. In the course of unpacking some of her own stories--of her mother and her decline from memory loss, of a trip to Iceland, of an illness--Solnit revisits fairytales and entertains other stories: about arctic explorers, Che Guevara among the leper colonies, and Mary Shelley's Dr. Frankenstein, about warmth and coldness, pain and kindness, decay and transformation, making art and making self. Woven together, these stories create a map which charts the boundaries and territories of storytelling, reframing who each of us is and how we might tell our story.

FIELD GUIDE TO GETTING LOST

FIELD GUIDE TO GETTING LOST

By: Solnit, Rebecca
$18.00
More Info
A stimulating exploration of wandering, being lost, and the uses of the unknown from the author of Orwell's Roses

Written as a series of autobiographical essays, A Field Guide to Getting Lost draws on emblematic moments and relationships in Rebecca Solnit's life to explore issues of uncertainty, trust, loss, memory, desire, and place. Solnit is interested in the stories we use to navigate our way through the world, and the places we traverse, from wilderness to cities, in finding ourselves, or losing ourselves. While deeply personal, her own stories link up to larger stories, from captivity narratives of early Americans to the use of the color blue in Renaissance painting, not to mention encounters with tortoises, monks, punk rockers, mountains, deserts, and the movie Vertigo. The result is a distinctive, stimulating voyage of discovery.