Comparative Literature: a Very Short Introduction


Author: Ben Hutchinson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198807279
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 160
View: 9195
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Comparative Literature is both the past and the future of literary studies. Its history is intimately linked to the political upheavals of modernity: from colonial empire-building in the nineteenth century, via the Jewish diaspora of the twentieth century, to the postcolonial culture wars ofthe twenty-first century, attempts at "comparison" have defined the international agenda of literature. But what is comparative literature? Ambitious readers looking to stretch themselves are usually intrigued by the concept, but uncertain of its implications. And rightly so, in many ways: even theprofessionals cannot agree on a single term, calling it comparative in English, compared in French, and comparing in German. The very term itself, when approached comparatively, opens up a Pandora's box of cultural differences. Yet this, in a nutshell, is the whole point of comparative literature. To look at literature comparatively is to realize just how much can be learned by looking over the horizon of one's own culture; it is to discover not only more about other literatures, but also about one's own; and it is toparticipate in the great utopian dream of understanding the way nations and languages interact. In an age that is paradoxically defined by migration and border crossing on the one hand, and by a retreat into monolingualism and monoculturalism on the other, the cross-cultural agenda of comparativeliterature has become increasingly central to the future of the Humanities. We are all, in fact, comparatists, constantly making connections across languages, cultures, and genres as we read. The question is whether we realise it.This Very Short Introduction tells the story of Comparative Literature as an agent of international relations, from the point of view both of scholarship and of cultural history more generally. Outlining the complex history and competing theories of comparative literature, Ben Hutchinson offers anaccessible means of entry into a notoriously slippery subject, and shows how comparative literature can be like a Rorschach test, where people see in it what they want to see. Ultimately, Hutchinson places comparative literature at the very heart of literary criticism, for as George Steiner oncenoted, 'to read is to compare'.ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, andenthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Jonathan Culler
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199691347
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 165
View: 5342
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Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction offers insights into theories about the nature of language and meaning, human identity, and the power of language. Fully updated for 2011 and including a new chapter on 'Ethics and aesthetics', it steers a clear and lucid path through an often impenetrable subject.

Decadence: a Very Short Introduction


Author: David Weir
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190610220
Category: Civilization
Page: 160
View: 5974
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The history of decadent culture runs from ancient Rome to nineteenth-century Paris, Victorian London, fin de siecle Vienna, Weimar Berlin, and beyond. The decline of Rome provides the pattern for both aesthetic and social decadence, a pattern that artists and writers in the nineteenth century imitated, emulated, parodied, and otherwise manipulated for aesthetic gain. What begins as the moral condemnation of modernity in mid-nineteenth century France on the part of decadent authors such as Charles Baudelaire ends up as the perverse celebration of the pessimism that accompanies imperial decline. This delight in decline informs the rich canon of decadence that runs from Joris-Karl Huysmans's A Rebours to Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray, Aubrey Beardsley's drawings, Gustav Klimt's paintings, and numerous other works. In this Very Short Introduction, David Weir explores the conflicting attitudes towards modernity present in decadent culture by examining the difference between aesthetic decadence--the excess of artifice--and social decadence, which involves excess in a variety of forms, whether perversely pleasurable or gratuitously cruel. Such contrariness between aesthetic and social decadence led some of its practitioners to substitute art for life and to stress the importance of taste over morality, a maneuver with far-reaching consequences, especially as decadence enters the realm of popular culture today. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

English Literature: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Jonathan Bate
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191614297
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 192
View: 3144
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Sweeping across two millennia and every literary genre, acclaimed scholar and biographer Jonathan Bate provides a dazzling introduction to English Literature. The focus is wide, shifting from the birth of the novel and the brilliance of English comedy to the deep Englishness of landscape poetry and the ethnic diversity of Britain's Nobel literature laureates. It goes on to provide a more in-depth analysis, with close readings from an extraordinary scene in King Lear to a war poem by Carol Ann Duffy, and a series of striking examples of how literary texts change as they are transmitted from writer to reader. The narrative embraces not only the major literary movements such as Romanticism and Modernism, together with the most influential authors including Chaucer, Donne, Johnson, Wordsworth, Austen, Dickens and Woolf, but also little-known stories such as the identity of the first English woman poet to be honoured with a collected edition of her works. Written with the flair and passion for which Jonathan Bate has become renowned, this book is the perfect Very Short Introduction for all readers and students of the incomparable literary heritage of these islands. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Chinese Literature: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Sabina Knight
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199913137
Category: History
Page: 160
View: 6583
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Perhaps nowhere else has literature been as conscious a collective endeavor as in China, and China's survival over three thousand years may owe more to its literary traditions than to its political history. This Very Short Introduction tells the story of Chinese literature from antiquity to the present, focusing on the key role literary culture played in supporting social and political concerns. Embracing traditional Chinese understandings of literature as encompassing history and philosophy as well as poetry and poetics, storytelling, drama, and the novel, Sabina Knight discusses the philosophical foundations of literary culture as well as literature's power to address historical trauma and cultivate moral and sensual passions. From ancient historical records through the modernization and globalization of Chinese literature, Knight draws on lively examples to underscore the close relationship between ethics and aesthetics, as well as the diversity of Chinese thought. Knight also illuminates the role of elite patronage; the ways literature has served the interests of specific groups; and questions of canonization, language, nationalism, and cross-cultural understanding. The book includes Chinese characters for names, titles, and key terms.

Theatre

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Marvin Carlson
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0199669821
Category: Performing Arts
Page: 131
View: 5401
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Theatre is one of the longest-standing art forms of modern civilization. Taking a global look at how various forms of theatre - including puppetry, dance, and mime - have been interpreted and enjoyed, this book explores all aspects of the theatre, including its relationship with religion, literature, and its value worldwide

Tragedy: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Adrian Poole
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0192802356
Category: Drama
Page: 147
View: 753
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What has tragedy been made to mean by dramatists, story-tellers, critics, philosophers, politicians, and journalists? This work shows the relevance of tragedy to the modern world, and extends beyond drama and literature into visual art and everyday experience.

Modern Latin American Literature: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199921059
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 152
View: 6171
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This Very Short Introduction chronicles the trends and traditions of modern Latin American literature, arguing that Latin American literature developed as a continent-wide phenomenon, not just an assemblage of national literatures, in moments of political crisis. With the Spanish American War came Modernismo, the end of World War I and the Mexican Revolution produced the avant-garde, and the Cuban Revolution sparked a movement in the novel that came to be known as the Boom. Within this narrative, the author covers all of the major writers of Latin American literature, from Andrés Bello and José María de Heredia, through Borges and García Márquez, to Fernando Vallejo and Roberto Bolaño.

Comparative Literature in an Age of Globalization


Author: Haun Saussy
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 9780801883804
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 261
View: 3230
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Responding to the frequent attacks against contemporary literary studies, Comparative Literature in an Age of Globalization establishes the continuing vitality of the discipline and its rigorous intellectual engagement with the issues facing today's global society.

A Companion to Comparative Literature


Author: Ali Behdad,Dominic Thomas
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118917359
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines
Page: 540
View: 7229
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A Companion to Comparative Literature presents a collection of more than thirty original essays from established and emerging scholars, which explore the history, current state, and future of comparative literature. Features over thirty original essays from leading international contributors Provides a critical assessment of the status of literary and cross-cultural inquiry Addresses the history, current state, and future of comparative literature Chapters address such topics as the relationship between translation and transnationalism, literary theory and emerging media, the future of national literatures in an era of globalization, gender and cultural formation across time, East-West cultural encounters, postcolonial and diaspora studies, and other experimental approaches to literature and culture

Fairy Tale


Author: Marina Warner
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019953215X
Category: Fiction
Page: 192
View: 2714
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From wicked queens, beautiful princesses, elves, monsters, and goblins, to giants, glass slippers, poisoned apples, magic keys, and mirrors, the characters and images of fairy tales have cast a spell over readers and audiences, both adults and children, for centuries. These fantastic stories have traveled across cultural borders, and been passed on from generation to generation, ever-changing, renewed with each re-telling. Few forms of literature have greater power to enchant us and rekindle our imagination than a fairy tale. But what is a fairy tale? Where do they come from and what do they mean? What do they try and communicate to us about morality, sexuality, and society? The range of fairy tales stretches across great distances and time; their history is entangled with folklore and myth, and their inspiration draws on ideas about nature and the supernatural, imagination and fantasy, psychoanalysis and feminism. In this Very Short Introduction, Marina Warner digs into a rich hoard of fairy tales in all their brilliant and fantastical variations, in order to define a genre and evaluate a literary form that keeps shifting through time and history. Drawing on a glittering array of examples, from classics such as Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, and The Sleeping Beauty, the Grimm Brothers' Hansel and Gretel, and Hans Andersen's The Little Mermaid, to modern-day realizations including Walt Disney's Snow White, Warner forms a persuasive case for fairy tale as a crucial repository of human understanding and culture. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The Princeton Sourcebook in Comparative Literature


Author: David Damrosch,Natalie Melas,Mbongiseni Buthelezi
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 0691132852
Category: Literary Collections
Page: 442
View: 4926
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As comparative literature reshapes itself in today's globalizing age, it is essential for students and teachers to look deeply into the discipline's history and its present possibilities. The Princeton Sourcebook in Comparative Literature is a wide-ranging anthology of classic essays and important recent statements on the mission and methods of comparative literary studies. This pioneering collection brings together thirty-two pieces, from foundational statements by Herder, Madame de Staël, and Nietzsche to work by a range of the most influential comparatists writing today, including Lawrence Venuti, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, and Franco Moretti. Gathered here are manifestos and counterarguments, essays in definition, and debates on method by scholars and critics from the United States, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America, giving a unique overview of comparative study in the words of some of its most important practitioners. With selections extending from the beginning of comparative study through the years of intensive theoretical inquiry and on to contemporary discussions of the world's literatures, The Princeton Sourcebook in Comparative Literature helps readers navigate a rapidly evolving discipline in a dramatically changing world.

Film: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Michael Wood
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0192803530
Category: Art
Page: 138
View: 681
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Offers a wealth of insight into the paradoxical nature of film, considering its role and impact on society in the 20th century as well as its future in the digital age. Original.

Literary Theory

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Jonathan Culler
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 019285383X
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 149
View: 5207
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A brief introduction to literary theory that explores the various moves that literary theory has encouraged.

Revolutions: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Jack A. Goldstone
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199858500
Category: History
Page: 148
View: 6028
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This volume places recent events in Iraq and Afghanistan to Tunisia and Egypt in historical context. It provides a history of revolutions and insurgencies, an introduction to the way social scientists think about the causes and outcomes of revolutions, and an explanation of their significance in historical and political change. Jack A. Goldstone begins with a brief history of revolutions and insurgencies, from the revolutions that brought democracy to Greek city-states and led to thefounding of Rome through the major peasant revolts of the Middle Ages in Europe and China, and the Independence revolts in the Americas. He also touches upon the insurgencies in Latin America (Zapatistas and FARC) and Asia (in Malaysia and the Philippines), whose failure is instructive in understanding why revolts succeed or fail. The book then discusses types of revolutions and their causes; the radical social revolutions in France, Russia, and China; the revolutions for independence in Indiaand Algeria; revolutions against dictators in Mexico, Cuba, and Iran; and the so-called color revolutions in Czechoslovakia, Ukraine, and Georgia. Goldstone considers some of the key revolutionary leaders of history where they came from, what inspired them, and how they changed their societies. A diverse range of popular groups have carried revolutions: peasants, miners, urban craftsmen, professionals, students, and mothers, all treated here. A chapter on insurgency and counter-insurgencycovers Iraq and Afghanistan. Finally, Goldstone grapples with the outcomes of revolutions: whether they are associated with the rise of freedom and democracy, devastating ideological dictatorships, or something inconclusive. He examines the historical legacies of revolutions, in the areas of freedom, economic growth, women's rights, and minority rights. Revolutions have succeeded enough to feed dreams of freedom, but failed often enough to prompt caution.

Classical Literature: A Very Short Introduction


Author: William Allan
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 019164336X
Category: Fiction
Page: 144
View: 7435
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From popular histories through to reworkings of classical subject matter by contemporary poets, dramatists, and novelists, the classical world and the masterpieces of its literature continue to fascinate readers and audiences in a huge variety of media. In this Very Short Introduction, William Allan explores what the 'classics' are and why they continue to shape our Western concepts of literature. Presenting a range of material from both Greek and Latin literature, he illustrates the variety and sophistication of these works, and considers examples from all the major genres. Ideal for the general reader interested in works of classic literature, as well as students at A-Level and University, this is a lively and lucid guide to the major authors and literary forms of the ancient period. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Children's Literature: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Kimberley Reynolds
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191620122
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 160
View: 3972
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Children's literature takes many forms - works adapted for children in antiquity, picture books and pop-ups - and now includes the latest online games and eBooks. This vast and amorphous subject is both intimately related to other areas of literary and cultural investigation but also has its own set of concerns, issues and challenges. From familiar authors including Beatrix Potter and Roald Dahl, classic books such as Pooh, Alice in Wonderland, and The Secret Garden, to modern works including Harry Potter and the Twilight series, thisVery Short Introduction provides an overview of the history of children's literature as it has developed in English, whilst at the same time introducing key debates, developments, and figures in the field. Raising questions about what shape the future of literature for children should take, and exploring the crossover with adult fiction, Reynolds shows that writing for children - whether on page or screen - has participated in shaping and directing ideas about culture, society and childhood. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Islam: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Malise Ruthven
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0199642877
Category: Religion
Page: 200
View: 2003
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Islam features widely in the news, often in its most militant forms, but few people in the non-Muslim world really understand its nature. Malise Ruthven's Very Short Introduction, offers essential insights into the big issues, provides fresh perspectives on contemporary questions, and guides us through the complex debates.

The French Revolution: A Very Short Introduction


Author: William Doyle
Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 0192853961
Category: History
Page: 135
View: 9949
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'[William Doyle] writes on the French Revolution with more understanding, balance and clarity than any other historian, living or dead.' -Prof. Tim Blanning, University of Cambridge

The English Language


Author: Simon Horobin
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198709250
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines
Page: 168
View: 9900
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The English language is spoken by more than a billion people throughout the world. But where did English come from? And how has it evolved into the language used today?In this Very Short Introduction Simon Horobin investigates how we have arrived at the English we know today, and celebrates the way new speakers and new uses mean that it continues to adapt. Engaging with contemporary concerns about correctness, Horobin considers whether such changes areimprovements, or evidence of slipping standards. What is the future for the English language? Will Standard English continue to hold sway, or we are witnessing its replacement by newly emerging Englishes?ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, andenthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.