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Showing papers in "American Literature in 1987"


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110 citations


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48 citations


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TL;DR: In the early 1800s, when California sought to enter the Union as a nonslaveholding state, the Southern states threatened to secede unless compromises extended slavery to other territory conquered in the Mexican war.
Abstract: TN I 850, when California sought to enter the Union as a nonslaveholding state, the Southern states threatened to secede unless compromises extended slavery to other territory conquered in the Mexican war. During the acrimonious debate, the leading disunionist, John C. Calhoun, pointed out the insufficiency of political rhetoric to prop up the American Union: "It cannot be saved by eulogies on the Union, however splendid or numerous. The cry of 'Union, Union, the glorious Union!' can no more prevent disunion than the cry of 'Health, health, glorious health!' on the part of the physician can save a patient." 1 During the I840s, Walt Whitman had offered such eulogies, but in his anger at the Compromise of i85o, he stopped praising so he could administer physic to a sick Union. In a group of satiric poems, he railed against the Congressional betrayers of freedom, the very principle for which the Union had been founded. One recent study has argued that the escalating crisis of the Union allowed Whitman to discover the healing role so central to "Song of Myself."2 Another has argued that the economic downturn of i854, which put Whitman out of the housebuilding business, allowed him to discover his role as celebrator of the artisan, who was rapidly being displaced by entrepreneurs and managers of capital.3 Such studies have made obsolete the widespread view that in the i850s Whitman

24 citations


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23 citations


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TL;DR: The letter from Jose Rodriguez Feo that prompted the poem was the third in a ten-year correspondence (1944-54) between the poet and the young Cuban, who quickly became Stevens's "most exciting correspondent" as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: The letter from Jose Rodriguez Feo that prompted Stevens's poem was the third in a ten-year correspondence (1944-54) between the poet and the young Cuban, who quickly became Stevens's "most exciting correspondent." The two shared a Harvard education, both were anxious to see Stevens translated for a Cuban audience, and each had an enduring admiration for Santayana, whose awareness of the cultural tensions between the Northern and Southern hemispheres formed a basis for the protracted argument between Stevens as the practical, Protestant father and the passionate Rodriguez Feo. The Cuban's descriptions of his life at the Villa Olga, of his black-and-white cow Lucera and his mule Pompilio, delighted Stevens, as did his wide-ranging questions and pronouncements of literary matters. Unaware of the well-known Stevens reticence, Rodriguz Feo elicited a more informal, playful response than Stevens's other correspondents. Formal salutations soon gave way to "Dear Antillean," "Dear Wallachio." Coyle and Filreis present the entire extant correspondence between the two men. The fifty-one Rodriguez Feo letters and ten of the numerous Stevens letters are printed here for the first time, and the exchange between the two is unusually complete. The work includes a critical introduction and complete annotation of the letters.

20 citations


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TL;DR: The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press.
Abstract: This subtle intellectual biography juxtaposes Ralph Waldo Emerson's revolutionary spiritual thinking with his elitist ideas of race and property--a contrast so sharp as to make his personality seem almost incoherent." Writing in (he great modern tradition of French anglicisles, Maurice Gonnaud compares Emerson's taste for solitude and the lyric ardor it awakened in him to his efforts to confront the social pressures of his times.Originally published in 1987.The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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TL;DR: In this article, Marjorie Perloff examines the poetry of Swinburne, Yeats, Stevens, Joyce, Williams, Cage, and Pound and finds that the Symbolist elements that Yeats rejected - fragments, purely metrical or visual impressions, and theoretical concepts - became increasingly important to later poets.
Abstract: Ezra Pound termed a new strain in Post-Modernist poetry 'Logopoeia - the dance of the intellect among words', and in this collection of essays, Marjorie Perloff examines this new strain in poetics. These essays focus on the poetry of Swinburne, Yeats, Stevens, Joyce, Williams, Cage, and Pound, among others. Through her analyses, the author traces a new direction in Post-Modernist poetry to Pound, whose legacy is present throughout this volume, even in essays not specifically devoted to him. Professor Perloff finds that the Symbolist elements that Yeats rejected - fragments, purely metrical or visual impressions, and theoretical concepts - became increasingly important to later poets. She also argues that the Romantic and Modernist cult of the personality has given way to a denial of the authoritative ego. These developments, combined with other cultural influences which Perloff identifies, such as the art of the Italian Futurists, lead to a new strain in poetry.

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TL;DR: In the book Three of On Christian Doctrine, Augustine defines the means and goals of Scriptural exegesis by invoking the concept of interpretive "charity" as discussed by the authors, which requires that any apparent ambiguities or inconsistencies in God's Word be clarified and reconciled: what is read should be subjected to diligent scrutiny until an interpretation contributing to the reign of charity is produced.
Abstract: TN Book Three of On Christian Doctrine, Augustine defines the means and goals of Scriptural exegesis by invoking the concept of interpretive "charity." Charity, "the motion of the soul toward the enjoyment of God for His own sake, and the enjoyment of one's self and of one's neighbor for the sake of God," requires that any apparent ambiguities or inconsistencies in God's Word be clarified and reconciled: "what is read should be subjected to diligent scrutiny until an interpretation contributing to the reign of charity is produced." 1 For Augustine, then, the interpreter's task is to recover or reconstitute the preexisting and essential unity of the Biblical text. As a number of recent critics have shown, literary scholarship has long taken such clarity and integrity as its standard: a text may be shaped by authorial intention or interpretive context, organic form or generic convention, but it is always assumed to be a self-consistent whole. What, however, is our "charitable" critical practice to make of a text that calls the very notions of charity and self-consistency into question, a text that problematizes interpretation itself? This is precisely what Herman Melville's The Confidence-Man does, and critical commentary on the novel exemplifies the scholarly desire to "recover" a text's formal and/or thematic unity, even if this means reshaping it in the image of one's own interpretive ideal.2

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TL;DR: MILY Dickinson's poems on the life of Jesus Christ, written from early to late in her canon, reflect a poetic concern spanning her entire creative life as mentioned in this paper, and when read together as a group allowing each to illuminate the others, these meditations on Jesus' birth, life, Crucifixion, and Resurrection form something like a nineteenth-century American Gospel.
Abstract: MILY Dickinson's poems on the life of Jesus Christ, written from early to late in her canon, reflect a poetic concern spanning her entire creative life. When read together as a group allowing each to illuminate the others, these meditations on Jesus' birth, life, Crucifixion, and Resurrection form something like a nineteenth-century American Gospel.1 By recreating the Gospels, often with wit and American colloquial language, Dickinson assumes the role of that "warbling, typic Teller" her "supposed person" observes the Bible needs to "captivate" readers.2 As "little 'John,'" her persona in one of many poems addressed to Jesus, she stresses the Gospels' contemporary relevance and makes them freshly available to her "Sweet countrymen" (497, 44I). But while spoken "New Englandly" (285) and in her unique voice, the deep structure of her Gospel poems places them in the poetic tradition of Christian devotion, a tradition extending from the "Dream of the Rood" and Pearl poets, through the medieval lyricists, Herbert, Vaughan, Crashaw, and Hopkins, to Eliot and Auden in our own day. The salient feature uniting Christian poets in a single identifiable poetic mode is their reverential attention to the life of Jesus Christ and their

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TL;DR: Duffey as discussed by the authors argues that Williams s work was informed by the dramatic sense of himself as a literary actor seeking embodiment of a dynamic, altering whole and his present condition of being, and that the writer was more engaged in expressing literary action than in forging literary objects.
Abstract: William Carlos Williams was an inventive writer never confined by any static genre or aesthetic postulate. In this authoritative study, Bernard Duffey recognizes that literary dynamism as he approaches the full breadth of Williams s work including his poetry, prose, fiction, and drama as an interrelated and interdependent web of writing. The result, the first truly comprehensive examination of a major American author and his kinetic art, will interest students and scholars of Williams, American literature, and modern poetry and criticism. Central to Duffey s study is a critical framework based on Kenneth Burke s "A Grammar of Motives" and the perception of the poet as an agent working in relation to a scene and its content in this case, the geographical and cultural locale that Williams clung to. Williams s work, Duffey argues, was informed by the dramatic sense of himself as a literary actor seeking embodiment of a dynamic, altering whole and his present condition of being. Ultimately, he stresses, the writer was more engaged in expressing literary action than in forging literary objects. Duffey amplifies this critical view through a close reading of specific works. Examining Williams s principal writings in the lights that seem most immediate to them, he tackles a variety of themes: the pervasiveness of scene in "In the American Grain" and the fiction; the role of agent or poetic person in "Kora in Hell, A Voyage to Pagany, Paterson," and "Pictures from Brueghel;" the function of poetic agency in the short poems, and of poetic action in Williams s drama."

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TL;DR: This paper studied the relationship of the journalism and fiction of five earlier American writers, including Joan Didion, and found that Didion's journalism is a created, shifting character who spoke memorably and who sometimes anatomized her own responses.
Abstract: H ISTORIANS, political scientists, sociologists, and communication theorists have written valuable general analyses of the print media, but close analysis of individual journalistic texts has been rare. Shelley Fisher Fishkin has effectively studied the relationship of the journalism and fiction of five earlier American writers; and the New Journalism of the I96os and 70s stimulated discussion of the lengthy factual works of writers like Norman Mailer, Tom Wolfe, and Truman Capote, precisely because the analysis useful for novels seemed appropriate to these writers' para-fictions.1 But even the books on Joan Didion, including the otherwise useful anthology edited by Ellen Friedman, continue to underrepresent Didion's journalism. Her journalism deserves more detailed study, not merely because it comes from one of our important novelists and essayists, but because-unlike most reporting-it continues to speak with such authority. Most recent discussion of literary journalism has focused on reporters' complex involvement in their own news stories; a related argument over "objective" presentation and "subjective" interpretation continues in the popular press. The speaker of Didion's journalism has therefore gained some attention. Her "I" goes beyond the intentionally neutral voice of the daily newsreporter-it is a created, shifting character who speaks memorably and who sometimes anatomizes her own responses. But the most distinctive feature of Didion's journalism is not her presentation of self but her presentation of objects and events. Didion's reviewers and readers have always been conscious

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TL;DR: One Man, One World 1. Starting with Columbus 2. The Mammoth Land 3. Necessary and Sufficient Acts 4. Plain and Fancy Fictions 5. Transgression and Transformation 6. The Rebirth of Tragedy Epilogue: After the Culmination Notes Works Cited Index
Abstract: Introduction: One Man, One World 1. Starting with Columbus 2. The Mammoth Land 3. Necessary and Sufficient Acts 4. Plain and Fancy Fictions 5. Transgression and Transformation 6. The Rebirth of Tragedy Epilogue: After the Culmination Notes Works Cited Index

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TL;DR: Ozick's belief that art is idolatrous for Jews is expressed in essay after essay; works of art can be redeemed, turned toward the service of God, only when they reveal "moral purpose" as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: W HETHER she is lecturing the literary establishment on its parochialism at the MLA convention, or pointing out to George Steiner the defects of his universalism, Cynthia Ozick's is the most provocative of contemporary Jewish-American voices. Also one of the most disquieting, for she lifts up again and again the vexed and intricate tangle of Jewish attitudes toward art that many readers would rather not see so clearly. Embedded in a nonJewish cultural tradition, schooled in techniques that help interpret that tradition, and accustomed to value art and artists as the finest achievements of our civilization, we listen to Ozick's misgivings with more than a little discomfort. Despite her own writing, for all her admiration of Henry James and George Eliot, Ozick's conviction that art is idolatrous for Jews announces itself in essay after essay; works of art can be redeemed, turned toward the service of God, only when they reveal "moral purpose."1 In asking whether art impedes the making of moral choices Ozick, of course, takes her place in a distinguished line of American artists from Hawthorne and James to Pound and Cather. All ideologies, the Calvinist as well as the Judaic, civil religion as well as aestheticism, limit choice. For the Jewish writer, however, the status of cultural outsider affects the context in which such choices are made. And for the traditionalist Jewish writer, who takes seriously the God who, in George Steiner's words, "not only prohibits the making of images to represent Him" but also "does not allow imagining," the problem of art, obedience, and moral

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TL;DR: In this paper, the lecture de " Fantasia of the Unconscious " par F. et al. and the composition de " Tender is the Night " are described. But they do not discuss the authorship of these works.
Abstract: La lecture de " Fantasia of the Unconscious " par F. et la composition de " Tender is the Night "

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TL;DR: In early 1891, Edith Wharton made a decision to move permanently to the French city of Faubourg by selling her New York apartment and leasing a flat in Paris.
Abstract: BETWEEN I907 and I9I0, Edith Wharton came to a momentous decision. She chose to reverse the pattern of her life, to make France her home and America a place to visit. She had travelled so frequently in Europe between the ages of five and twenty-one that, according to the estimate of R. W. B. Lewis, she had lived a total of eight of her first twenty-one years abroad. After her marriage to Teddy Wharton in 1885, she made an annual pilgrimage to the continent. Having rented the Paris apartment of the George Vanderbilts on the Rue de Varenne in I907 and I908, and having spent the entire year of I909 in Europe without returning at all to America, she determined to settle more or less permanently in the Faubourg. In early I910 she did so, selling her New York apartment and leasing a flat in Paris.' Although she had various reasons for her decision, precisely why or how she reached it by I9IO is not yet clearly understood. Wharton herself attributed her expatriation to her husband's health. While Teddy Wharton required a climate more mild than that of New York, she longed for "the kind of human communion," she wrote in her autobiography, that aimless wanderings about the French and Italian Rivieras in search of warm weather for Teddy did not provide.2 Teddy's condition alone, however, does not account for her decision to live abroad permanently. She unquestionably loved the art, the architecture, the history, the entire texture of the past that Europe offered. Further, she was

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TL;DR: In a recent anthology of American short stories, the editors have included "Paul's Case," one of Willa Cather's earliest and best known short stories as mentioned in this paper, the only one she would allow to be reprinted in anthologies or textbooks.
Abstract: IN a recent anthology of American short stories, the editors have included "Paul's Case," one of Willa Cather's earliest and best known short stories, "for many years . . . the only one she would allow to be reprinted in anthologies or textbooks." 1 It is right and good that the editors chose to reprint this story in a collection by which they intend to offer the student of American literature "the best of the old and the most promising among the newest short stories by American authors."2 It is appropriate, furthermore, that the editors should, in the author headnote for Cather, call the story "naturalistic," and then go on to explain: "The story embodies the concept that human fate is determined by the interplay between inherited or inward traits and environment or outward circumstances. When the inward and outward forces are in conflict, as they usually are in naturalistic fiction, the character is doomed to suffer tragic consequences."3 This is, again, appropriate-to the version of "Paul's Case" printed in The Troll Garden (1905), Cather's first collection of short stories. Yet when this story appeared again fifteen years after the publication of The Troll Garden, in Youth and the Bright Medusa (1920), Cather had progressed artistically