David Bleich sees the human body, its affective life, social life, and political functions as belonging to the study of language. In The Materiality of Language, Bleich addresses the need to end centuries of limiting access to language and its many contexts of use. To recognize language as material and treat it as such, argues Bleich, is to remove restrictions to language access due to historic patterns of academic censorship and unfair gender practices. Language is understood as a key path in the formation of all social and political relations, and becomes available for study by all speakers, who may regulate it, change it, and make it flexible like other material things.
Reviewer Comments from Mary Louise Pratt, Silver Professor and Professor of Spanish and Portuguese Languages and Literatures, New York University:
"A potentially foundational text in an emergent field [of] language studies, whose work is to break up the monopoly Linguistics and Philosophy have had on the study of language. . . . [An] alternative history of western linguistic thought . . . [featuring] thinkers who developed "material" or socially-driven philosophies of language. . . . One of the book's distinctive features is the use of gender as a key normative analytical lens throughout. It would be difficult to exaggerate how rare this is among language thinkers, and how productive it is for the arguments here."
"The book draws on an exceptionally vast body and range of research—[I] wonder how on earth he did it."
"The insight that the affective operation of language is elided in nearly all approaches to [language] acquisition is brilliant, and astounding. . . . The analysis of subject creation as an affective process of recognizing and sharing the same affective state, and language as the means for materializing affective states . . . is fascinating and persuasive."
"Thinking through gender makes the arguments here possible."
Indiana University Press, 2013
French poetry by Patrice de La Tour du Pin along with the English translation by Jennifer Grotz.
"The very idea of pursuing faith leads to the possibility of missing it or mistaking it or going wrong and, thus, one must learn to become comforted by uncertainty and paradox. Such is the tone of these songs of faith by Patrice de La Tour du Pin—anguish and hope are voices in the same choir. The justice Jennifer Grotz has given these difficult poems is clear—they shine with import and originality and the heart is in them still. It is a joy to have this book." —Maurice Manning
Patrice de La Tour du Pin (1911–1975) was born into a French noble family and grew up in the Gâtinais region of France. After attending university at Sciences Politiques in Paris and serving in the Second World War, he spent most of his life at home on his family's estate in Le Bignon-Mireabau. The author of numerous collections of poetry, he is perhaps best known for A Sum of Poetry, a three-volume, multi-genre work of poetry and mysticism.
Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2013
William Blake, poet, artist, and mystic, created a vast multidimensional universe through his verse and art. Spun from a fabric of symbolism and populated by a host of complex characters, Blake's comprehensive world has provided endless inspiration to subsequent generations. For the reader of Blake, background knowledge of his symbolism is a necessity. In this volume, first published in 1965, S. Foster Damon, father of modern Blake studies and a professor at Brown University until his death, has assembled all references to particular symbols or aspects of Blake's work and life, so that readers can see the entire spectrum of Blake's thought on a variety of topics.
For this edition of S. Foster Damon's classic reference work, Morris Eaves has written an updated annotated bibliography and a new foreword, included here along with his original 1988 index.
Dartmouth College Press-University Press of New England, 2013
Though The Deerslayer (1841) was the last of James Fenimore Cooper's five Leather-Stocking Tales to be written, it is the first in the chronology of Natty Bumppo's life. Set in the 1740s before the start of the French and Indian War, when Cooper's rugged frontiersman is in his twenties, Cooper's novel shows us how "Deerslayer" becomes "Hawkeye." It remains the best point of entry into the series for modern readers.
In his introduction, Ezra Tawil examines Cooper's motivations in writing The Deerslayer, the static nature of Natty, and Cooper's vexed racial politics. The John Harvard Library edition reproduces the authoritative text of The Deerslayer in The Writings of James Fenimore Cooper (State University of New York Press).
Belknap Press, 2013
An illuminating look at the many forms of poetry’s essential excellence by James Longenbach, a writer with "an ear as subtle and assured as any American poet now writing" (John Koethe).
"This book proposes some of the virtues to which the next poem might aspire: boldness, change, compression, dilation, doubt, excess, inevitability, intimacy, otherness, particularity, restraint, shyness, surprise, and worldliness. The word 'virtue' came to English from Latin, via Old French, and while it has acquired a moral valence, the word in its earliest uses gestured toward a magical or transcendental power, a power that might be embodied by any particular substance or act. With vices I am not concerned. Unlike the short-term history of taste, which is fueled by reprimand or correction, the history of art moves from achievement to achievement. Contemporary embodiments of poetry's virtues abound, and only our devotion to a long history of excellence allows us to recognize them." —from James Longenbach’s preface
The Virtues of Poetry is a resplendent and ultimately moving work of twelve interconnected essays, each of which describes the way in which a particular excellence is enacted in poetry. Longenbach closely reads poems by Shakespeare, Donne, Blake, Keats, Dickinson, Yeats, Pound, Bishop, and Ashbery (among others), sometimes exploring the ways in which these writers transmuted the material of their lives into art, and always emphasizing that the notions of excellence we derive from art are fluid, never fixed. Provocative, funny, and astute, The Virtues of Poetry is indispensable for readers, teachers, and writers. Longenbach reminds us that poetry delivers meaning in exacting ways, and that it is through its precision that we experience this art's lasting virtues.
Graywolf Press, 2013
Claire Vajou's French translation of James Longenbach's The Resistance to Poetry.
About the English edition (University of Chicago Press, 2005):
Poems inspire our trust, argues James Longenbach in this bracing work, because they don't necessarily ask to be trusted. Theirs is the language of self-questioning—metaphors that turn against themselves, syntax that moves one way because it threatens to move another. Poems resist themselves more strenuously than they are resisted by the cultures receiving them.
But the resistance to poetry is quite specifically the wonder of poetry. Considering a wide array of poets, from Virgil and Milton to Dickinson and Glück, Longenbach suggests that poems convey knowledge only inasmuch as they refuse to be vehicles for the efficient transmission of knowledge. In fact, this self-resistance is the source of the reader's pleasure: we read poetry not to escape difficulty but to embrace it.
An astute writer and critic of poems, Longenbach makes his case through a sustained engagement with the language of poetry. Each chapter brings a fresh perspective to a crucial aspect of poetry (line, syntax, figurative language, voice, disjunction) and shows that the power of poetry depends less on meaning than on the way in which it means—on the temporal process we negotiate in the act of reading or writing a poem. Readers and writers who embrace that process, Longenbach asserts, inevitably recoil from the exaggeration of the cultural power of poetry in full awareness that to inflate a poem's claim on our attention is to weaken it.
A graceful and skilled study, The Resistance to Poetry honors poetry by allowing it to be what it is. This book arrives at a critical moment—at a time when many people are trying to mold and market poetry into something it is not.
Éditions de Corlevour, 2013
Some of the greatest thinkers and writers of our age, such as Baudelaire, Rilke, Kleist, Freud and Kafka, meditate on play and the mysteries of inanimate life.
The essays and reflections in this collection explore the seriousness of play and the mysteries of inanimate life—"the unknown spaces, noises, dust, lost objects, and small animals that fill any house"—which have provoked many writers to take the side of these dead or non-human things, resulting in some of the most profound passages in literature.
On Dolls includes contributions from: Heinrich Von Kleist, "On the Marionette Theatre"; Charles Baudelaire, "The Philosophy of Toys"; Sigmund Freud, "The Uncanny"; Rainer Maria Rilke, "On the Dolls of Lotte Pritzel"; Franz Kafka, "The Cares of a Family Man"; Bruno Schulz, "Tailors' Dummies"; Walter Benjamin, "Old Toys: The Toy Exhibition at the Märkisches Museum:; Elizabeth Bishop, "Cirque d’Hiver"; Dennis Silk, "The Marionette Theatre:; Marina Warner, "On the Threshold: Sleeping Beauties."
"Kenneth Gross is particularly illuminating about the passionate intensity or violent hunger for being that seems to be the particular characteristic of puppets; it is as though, as the fossilised form of human longing, the puppet longs in turn, vividly and vivaciously, for the life that can never be its own." —Steven Connor on Puppet: An Essay on Uncanny Life
Notting Hill, 2012
The Green Monster. The Triangle. Pesky's Pole. They are but a few of the defining features of Fenway Park, home base for legions of devoted Red Sox fans. Now, a hundred years after Fenway first opened its gates, Mercy! tells the park's history through Red Sox radio and TV announcers recalling and commemorating the American institution.
Mercy! is three history books in one, covering Fenway, the Red Sox, and their voices on the air. Announcers have become as much a part of Red Sox lore as the park has. Fred Hoey was the team's first radio announcer. Successor Jim Britt called its first live TV broadcast. Curt Gowdy denoted respectability, courtesy, and pluck. Ken Coleman played his voice like a violin. Ned Martin's signature exclamation gives Mercy! its title. He called one legendary game after another, including Carlton Fisk waving fair his World Series-tying home run in 1975. Other well-known voices include Bob Murphy, Jim Woods, Jon Miller, Ken Harrelson, Dick Stockton, Sean McDonough, and Joe Castiglione. In 2004, when the Sox finally won their first World Series since 1918, Castiglione asked the nation, "Can you believe it?" Many can't, even now.
Baseball historian Curt Smith's interviews with many of these beloved broadcasting personalities provide the backbone for this unique celebration of "America's Most Beloved Ballpark."
Potomac Books, 2012
Since radio's debut in the 1920s and television's in the '30s, the baseball announcer has become entertainer, observer, and extended member of the family. In A Talk in the Park: Nine Decades of Baseball Tales from the Broadcast Booth, many of the pastime's most popular and famous announcers—the Voices—tell their favorite stories in their own distinctive words. It is riveting oral history.
Herein is the largest total of active and retired broadcasters featured in any sports book: 116. Its radio and TV tales include every major-league team and such networks as ESPN, Fox, TBS, and the new MLB channel, and capture the Voices commenting on ballparks, managers, the characters of the game, umpires, special teams, interleague play, improvements to the game—and on one another, including the beloved Ernie Harwell, who died in 2010 and to whom the book is dedicated.
Columnist Christine Brennan says of author Curt Smith: "No one knows baseball broadcasters as well as he does." In particular, A Talk in the Park addresses trends of the past two decades—the rise of Hispanic and other minority announcers, interleague play, ex-jocks' warp-speed climb, whiz-bang technology, 24/7 coverage, and the evolution of broadcasting, from radio to network television to cable.
Told by baseball's leading broadcast historian, endorsed by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and the National Radio Hall of Fame, and starring announcers who reach millions, A Talk in the Park brilliantly relates what baseball was, is, and is likely to become.
Potomac Books, 2011
On the campaign trail, Barack Obama faced a difficult task—rallying African American voters while resisting his opponents' attempts to frame him as "too black" to govern the nation as a whole. Obama's solution was to employ what Toni Morrison calls "race-specific, race-free language," avoiding open discussions of racial issues while using terms and references that carried a specific cultural resonance for African American voters.
Stephanie Li argues that American politicians and writers are using a new kind of language to speak about race. Challenging the notion that we have moved into a "post-racial" era, she suggests that we are in an uneasy moment where American public discourse demands that race be seen, but not heard. Analyzing contemporary political speech with nuanced readings of works by such authors as Toni Morrison, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Colson Whitehead, Li investigates how Americans of color have negotiated these tensions, inventing new ways to signal racial affiliations without violating taboos against open discussions of race.
Rutgers University Press, 2011
Read a feature article about Signifying without Specifying: Racial Discourse in the Age of Obama in Rochester Review.
The puppet creates delight and fear. It may evoke the innocent play of childhood, or become a tool of ritual magic, able to negotiate with ghosts and gods. Puppets can be creepy things, secretive, inanimate while also full of spirit, alive with gesture and voice. In this eloquent book, Kenneth Gross contemplates the fascination of these unsettling objects—objects that are also actors and images of life.
The poetry of the puppet is central here, whether in its blunt grotesquery or symbolic simplicity, and always in its talent for metamorphosis. On a meditative journey to seek the idiosyncratic shapes of puppets on stage, Gross looks at the anarchic Punch and Judy show, the sacred shadow theater of Bali, and experimental theaters in Europe and the United States, where puppets enact everything from Baroque opera and Shakespearean tragedy to Beckettian farce. Throughout, he interweaves accounts of the myriad faces of the puppet in literature—Collodi’s cruel, wooden Pinocchio, puppetlike characters in Kafka and Dickens, Rilke’s puppet-angels, the dark puppeteering of Philip Roth’s Micky Sabbath—as well as in the work of artists Joseph Cornell and Paul Klee. The puppet emerges here as a hungry creature, seducer and destroyer, demon and clown. It is a test of our experience of things, of the human and inhuman. A book about reseeing what we know, or what we think we know, Puppet evokes the startling power of puppets as mirrors of the uncanny in life and art.
University of Chicago Press, 2011
Read a review of Puppet: An Essay on Uncanny Life in the Sunday New York Times.
Eighteenth-century satirists designed the pages of their books in notoriously elaborate ways—presenting the reader with footnotes by fictional editors, blank spaces indicating "lost" or "censored" material, and facing-page translations crafted so as to conceal departures from the original. Print, Visuality, and Gender in Eighteenth-Century Satire argues that these typographical experiments reflect the Augustan satirists' ambivalence about their era's ever-more ocular approach to nature, to society, and to literature itself (for increasingly literature was taking the form not of a theatrical performance, or of a manuscript traded between friends, but rather of a printed page, whose meaning could be accessed "only" visually). On the one hand, Pope, Swift, and their contemporaries remained convinced of the ability of their texts to function as a kind of ideal optical instrument, sharpening their readers' vision both physically and morally. On the other hand, they feared the dangers of an overly scrutinizing gaze: such a gaze (whether applied to print or to persons) might all too easily undermine the viewer's natural faculty for candor, sympathy, and—perhaps just as importantly—delight and desire. Wanting to ensure that their printed texts never became either a tool of or target for this kind of dehumanizing visual conduct, the Augustans thus shaped their pages in such a way as to "train" their readers in how to look—to restructure how readers viewed both words and world, and to fashion a mode of vision that was simultaneously scrupulous and self-conscious, skeptical but still open to beauty.
Following her debut collection, Cusp, chosen by Yusef Komunyakaa to win the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference Bakeless Prize, the composed, observed quality of Jennifer Grotz's The Needle will remind readers of the poetry of Elizabeth Bishop and Ellen Bryant Voigt. Whether she is describing a town square in Kraków, where many of these poems are set, the ponies of Ocracoke Island, a boy playing a violin, or clouds, she finds the lyrical details that release an atmosphere of heightened, transcendent attention in which the things of the world become the World, what Zbigniew Herbert called "royal silence."
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2011
A capacious, elegant collection from a writer "with an ear as subtle and assured as any American poet now writing" (John Koethe).
These poems are filled with the accumulated treasure of a lifetime, yet at their heart is the loss that fuels this dream of abundance: the friend to be mourned, the child to be loved, the poem to be written. Again and again, The Iron Key brings us to the door that opens onto the future.
W. W. Norton, 2010
Why would someone choose bondage over individual freedom? What type of freedom can be found in choosing conditions of enslavement? In Something Akin to Freedom, winner of the 2008 SUNY Press Dissertation/First Book Prize in African American Studies, Stephanie Li explores literary texts where African American women decide to remain in or enter into conditions of bondage, sacrificing individual autonomy to achieve other goals. In fresh readings of stories by Harriet Jacobs, Hannah Crafts, Gayl Jones, Louisa Picquet, and Toni Morrison, Li argues that amid shifting positions of power and through acts of creative agency, the women in these narratives make seemingly anti-intuitive choices that are simultaneously limiting and liberating. She explores how the appeal of the freedom of the North is constrained by the potential for isolation and destabilization for women rooted in strong social networks in the South. By introducing reproduction, mother-child relationships, and community into discourses concerning resistance, Li expands our understanding of individual liberation to include the courage to express personal desire and the freedom to love.
SUNY Press, 2010
On a summer day in 1946 Sally Werner, the precocious young daughter of hardscrabble Pennsylvania farmers, secretly accepts her cousin's invitation to ride his new motorcycle. Like so much of what follows in Sally's life, it's an impulsive decision with dramatic and far-reaching consequences. Soon she abandons her home to begin a daring journey of self-creation, the truth of which she entrusts only with her granddaughter and namesake, six decades later. But when young Sally's father—a man she has never known—enters her life and offers another story altogether, she must uncover the truth of her grandmother's secret history.
Boldly rendered and beautifully told, in FOLLOW ME Joanna Scott has crafted a paean to the American tradition of re-invention and a sweeping saga of timeless and tender storytelling.
Little, Brown, 2009
In 1950, Vin Scully broadcast his first major league baseball game for the then-Brooklyn Dodgers. Nearly sixty years later he still invites a listener to "pull up a chair," completing a record fifty-ninth consecutive year of play-by-play.
Recruited and mentored by the legendary Red Barber, the New York-born Scully moved with the Dodgers to Los Angeles in early 1958. His instantly recognizable voice has described players from Duke Snider to Orel Hershiser to Manny Ramirez, with hundreds in between.
At one time or another, Scully has aired NBC Television's Game of the Week, twelve All-Star Games, eighteen no-hitters, twenty-five World Series, and network football, golf, and tennis. He has made every sportscasting Hall of Fame; received a Lifetime Emmy Achievement award and a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; and been voted "most memorable [L.A. Dodgers] franchise personality." In 2000, the American Sportscasters Association named Scully the Sportscaster of the 20th Century.
The first biography of Vin Scully is long overdue. Curt Smith—to USA Today, "The voice of authority on baseball broadcasting"—is the ideal man to write it. Scully opens each broadcast by wishing listeners, "A very pleasant good afternoon." Pull Up a Chair will provide a reader with the same.
Potomac Books, 2009
This Companion forms an accessible introduction to the life and work of Thomas Jefferson, third President of the United States and author of the Declaration of Independence. Essays explore Jefferson's political thought, his policies towards Native Americans, his attitude to race and slavery, as well as his interests in science, architecture, religion and education. Contributors include leading literary scholars and historians; the essays offer up to date overviews of his many interests, his friendships and his legacy. Together, they reveal his importance in the cultural and political life of early America. At the same time these original essays speak to abiding modern concerns about American culture and Jefferson's place in it. This Companion will be essential reading for students and scholars of Jefferson, and is designed for use by students of American literature and American history.
Cambridge University Press, 2008
Deeply moving. . . . Joanna Scott brilliantly captures war as seen through the innocence of a child." –Bookpage
Adriana Nardi is only 10 years old when Allied forces occupy her lush island home during World War II, plaguing the quiet Italian village with violence and uncertainty. Amdu is a Senegalese soldier who abandons his comrades and befriends Adriana after witnessing an unspeakable act that has far-reaching repercussions. Decades later, on a commuter train bound for Penn Station, 60-year-old Adriana revisits her emories of the war and her doomed relationship with Amdu, even as a present crisis threatens her life.
Back Bay Books, 2008
From Thomas Jefferson to John Rawls, justice has been at the center of America's self-image and national creed. At the same time, for many of its peoples-from African slaves and European immigrants to women and the poor-the American experience has been defined by injustice: oppression, disenfranchisement, violence, and prejudice.
In Identity and the Failure of America, John Michael explores the contradictions between a mythic national identity promising justice to all and the realities of a divided, hierarchical, and frequently iniquitous history and social order. Through a series of insightful readings, Michael analyzes such cultural moments as the epic dramatization of the tension between individual ambition and communal complicity in Moby-Dick, attempts to effect social change through sympathy in the novels of Lydia Marie Child and Harriet Beecher Stowe, Ralph Waldo Emerson's antislavery activism and Frederick Douglass's long fight for racial equity, and the divisive figures of John Brown and Nat Turner in American letters and memory.
Focusing on exemplary instances when the nature of the United States as an essentially conflicted nation turned to force, Michael ultimately posits the development of a more cosmopolitan American identity, one that is more fully and justly imagined in response to the nation's ethical failings at home and abroad.
University of Minnesota Press, 2008
Poetry is the sound of language organized in lines." James Longenbach opens this provocative book with that essential statement. Through a range of examples—from Shakespeare and Milton to Ashbery and Glück—Longenbach describes the function of line in metered, rhymed, syllabic, and free-verse poetry. The Art of the Poetic Line is a vital new resource by one of America's most important critics and most engaging poets.
Graywolf Press, 2008
Music videos are available on more channels, in more formats, and in more countries than ever before. While MTV—the network that introduced music video to most viewers—is moving away from music video programming, other media developments signal the longevity and dynamism of the form. Among these are the proliferation of niche-based cable and satellite channels, the globalization of music video production and programming, and the availability of videos not just on television but also via cell phones, DVDs, enhanced CDs, PDAs, and the Internet. In the context of this transformed media landscape, Medium Cool showcases a new generation of scholarship on music video. Scholars of film, media, and music revisit and revise existing research as they provide historically and theoretically expansive new perspectives on music video as a cultural form.
The essays take on a range of topics, including questions of authenticity, the tension between high-art influences and mass-cultural appeal, the prehistory of music video, and the production and dissemination of music videos outside the United States. Among the thirteen essays are a consideration of how the rapper Jay-Z uses music video as the primary site for performing, solidifying, and discarding his various personas; an examination of the recent emergence of indigenous music video production in Papua New Guinea; and an analysis of the cultural issues being negotiated within Finland's developing music video industry. Contributors explore precursors to contemporary music videos, including 1950s music television programs such as American Bandstand, Elvis's internationally broadcast 1973 Aloha from Hawaii concert, and different types of short musical films that could be viewed in "musical jukeboxes" of the 1940s and 1960s. Whether theorizing music video in connection to postmodernism or rethinking the relation between sound and the visual image, the essays in Medium Cool reveal music video as rich terrain for further scholarly investigation.
Contributors. Roger Beebe, Norma Coates, Kay Dickinson, Cynthia Fuchs, Philip Hayward, Amy Herzog, Antti-Ville Kärjä, Melissa McCartney, Jason Middleton, Lisa Parks, Kip Pegley, Maureen Turim, Carol Vernallis, Warren Zanes
Duke University Press, 2007
Draft of a Letter is a book about belief—not belief in the unknowable but belief in what seems bewilderingly plain. Pondering the bodies we inhabit, the words we speak, these poems discover infinitude in the most familiar places. The revelation is disorienting and, as a result, these poems talk to themselves, revise themselves, fashioning a dialogue between self and soul that opens outward to include other voices, lovers, children, angels, and ghosts. For James Longenbach, great distance makes the messages we send sweeter. To be divided from ourselves is never to be alone. "If the kingdom is in the sky," says the body to the soul, "Birds will get there before you." "In time," says the awakening soul, "I liked my second / Body better / Than the first." To live, these poems insist, is to arise every day to the strange magnificence of the people and places we thought we knew best. Draft of a Letter is an unsettled and radiant paradiso, imagined in the death-shadowed, birth-haunted middle of a long life.
University of Chicago Press, 2007
The Lingua Ignota, "brought forth" by the twelfth-century German nun Hildegard of Bingen, provides 1012 neologisms for praise of Church and new expression of the things of her world. Noting her visionary metaphors, her music, and various medieval linguistic philosophies, Higley examines how the "Unknown Language" makes arid signifiers green again. This text, however, is too often seen in too narrow a context: glossolalia, angelic language, secret code. Higley provides an edition and English translation ofits glosses in the Riesencodex (with assistance from the Berlin MS) , but also places it within a history of imaginary language making from medieval times to the most contemporaryprojectsin efforts to uncover this woman's bold involvement in an intellectual and creative endeavor that spans centuries.
Palgrave Macmillan, 2007
An anthology of short fiction by the critically acclaimed author of Various Antidotes explores the underlying complexities and tensions of seemingly ordinary moments in life, as it follows the stories of a young woman in Jazz Age New York involved in an unlikely relationship with her boss at Woolworth's and a young businessman whose car breaks down in a country town.
Back Bay Books, 2006
Shylock, the Jewish moneylender in The Merchant of Venice who famously demands a pound of flesh as security for a loan to his anti-Semitic tormentors, is one of Shakespeare's most complex and idiosyncratic characters. With his unsettling eloquence and his varying voices of protest, play, rage, and refusal, Shylock remains a source of perennial fascination. What explains the strange and enduring force of this character, so unlike that of any other in Shakespeare's plays? Kenneth Gross posits that the figure of Shylock is so powerful because he is the voice of Shakespeare himself. Marvelously speculative and articulate, Gross's book argues that Shylock is a breakthrough for Shakespeare the playwright, an early realization of the Bard's power to create dramatic voices that speak for hidden, unconscious, even inhuman impulses—characters larger than the plays that contain them and ready to escape the author's control. Shylock is also a mask for Shakespeare's own need, rage, vulnerability, and generosity, giving form to Shakespeare's ambition as an author and his uncertain bond with the audience. Gross's vision of Shylock as Shakespeare's covert double leads to a probing analysis of the character's peculiar isolation, ambivalence, opacity, and dark humor. Addressing the broader resonance of Shylock, both historical and artistic, Gross examines the character's hold on later readers and writers, including Heinrich Heine and Philip Roth, suggesting that Shylock mirrors the ambiguous states of Jewishness in modernity. A bravura critical performance, Shylock Is Shakespeare will fascinate readers with its range of reference, its union of rigor and play, and its conjectural—even fictive—means of coming to terms with the question of Shylock, ultimately taking readers to the very heart of Shakespeare's humanizing genius.
University of Chicago Press, 2006
Russ Hodges's frantic pronouncement at Bobby Thomson's "Shot Heard 'Round the World": "The Giants win the pennant! The Giants win the pennant!" and Jack Buck's incredulous remark after Kirk Gibson's heroic home run in the 1988 World Series: "I don't believe what I just saw!" are just a couple examples. The sometimes downright hysterical commentaries of broadcasters very often become more memorable than even the games they describe. Though countless studies have weighed the merits of our great players, none has assessed the virtues of the men who turn diving catches and soaring home runs into the stuff of myth. In The Voices of Summer, Curt Smith has compiled a list of 101 classic announcers—from national celebrities to local favorites, overlooked giants to upcoming stars—in search of the greatest baseball broadcaster of all time. From the poetic reflections of Dick Enberg to the Falstaffian frenzy of Harry Caray, Smith answers the timeless questions: Was Mel Allen better than Ernie Harwell? Does Joe Buck compare to his legendary dad? Which of today's young broadcasters really matches the all-time greats? Irreverent, authoritative, and uncommonly addictive, this book will be the definitive guide to baseball announcing for any and all baseball fans.
Da Capo Press, 2005