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When Novels Were Books
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 256

When Novels Were Books

  • Type: Book
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  • Published: 2020
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  • Publisher: Unknown

The novel was born religious, alongside Protestant texts produced in the same format by the same publishers. Novels borrowed features of these texts but over the years distinguished themselves, becoming the genre we know today. Jordan Alexander Stein traces this history, showing how the physical object of the book shaped the stories it contained.

Avidly Reads Theory
  • Language: en

Avidly Reads Theory

  • Type: Book
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  • Published: 2019-10-08
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  • Publisher: NYU Press

Avidly Reads is a series of short books about how culture makes us feel. Founded in 2012 by Sarah Blackwood and Sarah Mesle, Avidly—an online magazine supported by the Los Angeles Review of Books—specializes in short-form critical essays devoted to thinking and feeling. Avidly Reads is an exciting new series featuring books that are part memoir, part cultural criticism, each bringing to life the author’s emotional relationship to a cultural artifact or experience. Avidly Reads invites us to explore the surprising pleasures and obstacles of everyday life. This is a story about the emotional lives of ideas. As an avowed “theory head,” Jordan Alexander Stein confronts a contradiction: that the abstract, and often frustrating rigors of theory also produced a sense of pride and identity for him and his friends: an idea of how to be and a way to live. Although Stein explains what theory is, this is not an introduction or a how-to. Organized around five ways that theory makes us feel—silly, stupid, sexy, seething and stuck—Stein travels back to the late nineties to tell a story of coming of age at a particular moment and to measure how that moment lives on now.

Early African American Print Culture
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 432

Early African American Print Culture

The eighteenth and nineteenth centuries saw both the consolidation of American print culture and the establishment of an African American literary tradition, yet the two are too rarely considered in tandem. In this landmark volume, a stellar group of established and emerging scholars ranges over periods, locations, and media to explore African Americans' diverse contributions to early American print culture, both on the page and off. The book's chapters consider domestic novels and gallows narratives, Francophone poetry and engravings of Liberia, transatlantic lyrics and San Francisco newspapers. Together, they consider how close attention to the archive can expand the study of African American literature well beyond matters of authorship to include issues of editing, illustration, circulation, and reading—and how this expansion can enrich and transform the study of print culture more generally.

When Novels Were Books
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 256

When Novels Were Books

The novel was born religious, alongside Protestant texts produced in the same format by the same publishers. Novels borrowed features of these texts but over the years distinguished themselves, becoming the genre we know today. Jordan Alexander Stein traces this history, showing how the physical object of the book shaped the stories it contained.

The Dream of the Great American Novel
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 584

The Dream of the Great American Novel

The first book in many years to take in the full sweep of national fiction, The Dream of the Great American Novel explains why this supposedly antiquated idea continues to thrive. It shows that four G.A.N. "scripts" are keys to the dynamics of American literature and identity--and to the myth of a nation perpetually under construction.

The Natural History of Sexuality in Early America
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 304

The Natural History of Sexuality in Early America

Ultimately, The Natural History of Sexuality in Early America not only rewrites all dominant scholarly narratives of eighteenth-century sexual behavior but poses a major intervention into queer theoretical understandings of the relationship between sex and the subject.

London and the Making of Provincial Literature
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 296

London and the Making of Provincial Literature

In the early nineteenth century, London publishers dominated the transatlantic book trade. No one felt this more keenly than authors from Ireland, Scotland, and the United States who struggled to establish their own national literary traditions while publishing in the English metropolis. Authors such as Maria Edgeworth, Sydney Owenson, Walter Scott, Washington Irving, and James Fenimore Cooper devised a range of strategies to transcend the national rivalries of the literary field. By writing prefaces and footnotes addressed to a foreign audience, revising texts specifically for London markets, and celebrating national particularity, provincial authors appealed to English readers with idealis...

American Literature and the Culture of Reprinting, 1834-1853
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 376

American Literature and the Culture of Reprinting, 1834-1853

The antebellum period has long been identified with the belated emergence of a truly national literature. And yet, as Meredith L. McGill argues, a mass market for books in this period was built and sustained through what we would call rampant literary piracy: a national literature developed not despite but because of the systematic copying of foreign works. Restoring a political dimension to accounts of the economic grounds of antebellum literature, McGill unfolds the legal arguments and political struggles that produced an American "culture of reprinting" and held it in place for two crucial decades. In this culture of reprinting, the circulation of print outstripped authorial and editorial...

Avidly Reads Passages
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 168

Avidly Reads Passages

  • Type: Book
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  • Published: 2021-02-02
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  • Publisher: NYU Press

"What is the value of Black life in America?" In Avidly Reads Passages, Michelle D. Commander plies four freighted modes of travel—the slave ship, train, automobile, and bus—to map the mobility of her ancestors over the past five centuries. In the process, she refreshes the conventional American travel narrative by telling an urgent story about how history shapes what moves us, as well as what prevents so many Black Americans from moving or being moved. Anchored in her maternal kin’s long history on and alongside plantations in rural South Carolina, Commander explores her family members’ ability and inability to navigate safely through space, time, and emotion, detailing how Black li...

The Female Complaint
  • Language: en
  • Pages: 368

The Female Complaint

The Female Complaint is part of Lauren Berlant’s groundbreaking “national sentimentality” project charting the emergence of the U.S. political sphere as an affective space of attachment and identification. In this book, Berlant chronicles the origins and conventions of the first mass-cultural “intimate public” in the United States, a “women’s culture” distinguished by a view that women inevitably have something in common and are in need of a conversation that feels intimate and revelatory. As Berlant explains, “women’s” books, films, and television shows enact a fantasy that a woman’s life is not just her own, but an experience understood by other women, no matter how...