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Aberrations of Mourning
Laurence A. Rickels
University of Minnesota Press, 2011
Aberrations of Mourning, originally published in 1988, is the long unavailable first book in Laurence A. Rickels’s “unmourning” trilogy, followed by The Case of California and Nazi Psychoanalysis.

Rickels studies mourning and melancholia within and around psychoanalysis, analyzing the writings of such thinkers as Freud, Nietzsche, Lessing, Heinse, Artaud, Keller, Stifter, Kafka, and Kraus. Rickels maintains that we must shift the way we read literature, philosophy, and psychoanalysis to go beyond traditional Oedipal structures.

Aberrations of Mourning argues that the idea of the crypt has had a surprisingly potent influence on psychoanalysis, and Rickels shows how society’s disturbed relationship with death and dying, our inability to let go of loved ones, has resulted in technology to form more and more crypts for the dead by preserving them—both physically and psychologically—in new ways.
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Academic Discourse and Critical Consciousness
Patricia Bizzell
University of Pittsburgh Press, 1992
This collection of essays traces the attempts of one writing teacher to understand theoretically -  and to respond pedagogically - to what happens when students from diverse backgrounds learn to use language in college.

Bizzell begins from the assumption that democratic education requires us to attempt to educate all students, including those whose social or ethnic backgrounds may have offered them little experience with academic discourse.  Over the ten-year period chronicled in these essays, she has seen herself primarily as an advocate for such students, sometimes called  “basic writers.”

Bizzell’s views on education for “critical consciousness,” widely discussed in the writing field, are represented in most of the essays in this volume.  But in the last few chapters, and in the intellectual autobiography written as the introduction to the volume, she calls her previous work into question on the grounds that her self-appointment as an advocate for basic writers may have been presumptous, and her hopes for the politically liberating effects of academic discourse misplaced.  She concludes by calling for a theory of discourse that acknowledges the need to argue for values and pedagogy that can assist these arguements to proceed more inclusively than ever before.

The essays in this volume constitute the main body of work in which Bizzell developed her influential and often cited ideas.  Organized chronologically, they  present a picture of how she has grappled with major issues in composition studies over the past decade.  In the process, she sketches a trajectory for the development of composition studies as an academic discipline.
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Acknowledging Writing Partners
Laura Micciche
University Press of Colorado, 2017
Acknowledging Writing Partners treats the genre of written acknowledgements as a lens for viewing writing as a practice of indebted partnerships. Like new media scholars who have argued that studying ubiquitous technologies such as the pencil reveals the mundane and profound ways in which writing is always mediated by tools, Laura R. Micciche argues that writing activities are frequently mediated by human and non-human others, advancing a view of composing that accounts for partners who emerge in acknowledgements: feelings, animals, and random material phenomena. Acknowledgements are micro economies of debt and praise; they reveal writing's connectedness, often repressed by the argument or set of propositions that follow. Micciche suggests new methods for studying and theorizing writing that take into account the whole surround of writing. In doing so, Micciche asks what difference this economy makes to dominant conceptions of writers and writing as well as to pedagogical principles that inform writing instruction—and what difference it make to writers.
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Across Property Lines
Textual Ownership in Writing Groups
Candace Spigelman
Southern Illinois University Press, 2000

Candace Spigelman investigates the dynamics of ownership in small group writing workshops, basing her findings on case studies involving two groups: a five-member creative writing group meeting monthly at a local Philadelphia coffee bar and a four-member college-level writing group meeting in their composition classroom. She explores the relationship between particular notions of intellectual property within each group as well as the effectiveness of writing groups that embrace these notions. Addressing the negotiations between the public and private domains of writing within these groups, she discovers that for both the committed writers and the novices, “values associated with textual ownership play a crucial role in writing group performance.”

Spigelman discusses textual ownership, intellectual property, and writing group processes and then reviews theories relating to authorship and knowledge making. After introducing the participants in each group, discussing their texts, and describing their workshop sessions, she examines the writers’ avowed and implied beliefs about exchanging ideas and protecting individual property rights.

Spigelman stresses the necessary tension between individual and social aspects of writing practices: She argues for the need to foster more collaborative activity among student writers by replicating the processes of writers working in nonacademic settings but also contends that all writers must be allowed to imagine their individual agency and authority as they compose.

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Across the Wounded Galaxies
Interviews with Contemporary American Science Fiction Writers
Conducted and edited by Larry McCaffery
University of Illinois Press, 1990
Modern science fiction writers have long inhabited a dimension far removed from the comfortable realms of filmic space opera franchises and Dr. Who. Too often lurking along the margins of literature are some of the most intelligent, imaginative, and outrageous writing talents of our day. These interviews by legendary critic and SF proponent Larry McCaffery journeys into the minds and psyches of ten iconic writers whose works influenced the evolution of science fiction. Authors like Octavia Butler, William Gibson, Thomas Disch, Ursula Le Guin, and Bruce Sterling discuss New Wave, hard versus soft SF, and the viability of the genre as a means of suggesting political, radical, and sexual agendas. As these writers speak candidly about their works, backgrounds, and aesthetic impulses, it becomes clear that the issues on their minds and in their fiction are central to contemporary life and art.
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Acts of Mind
Conversations with Contemporary Poets
Richard Jackson
University of Alabama Press, 1984
A good poem is, to borrow from Wallace Stevens, a “poem of the mind in the act of finding / What will suffice” (“Of Modern Poetry”), a poem of the mind that both thinks and feels
 
Acts of Mind grew out of interviews conducted by the author for Poetry Miscellany. The aim of which was to help develop a method for talking about the work of contemporary poets.
 
The poets whose views appear in this volume represent a fair cross-section of the more important tendencies and impulses to be found in contemporary poetry and poetics.
 
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Adventures in Pen Land
One Writer's Journey from Inklings to Ink
Marianne Gingher
University of Missouri Press, 2008
She invites us along on a raucous tour of soul-sucking jobs, marriage, and a teaching career, with accompanying disquisitions on blasphemous reading preferences, ’60s pop culture, writing workshops, and other amusing detours and distractions on the way to publication. She also shares her keen insights into the role of a Southern writer in American literary culture, the experience of writing as a mother, and the process of novel-writing as compared to a lengthy family car trip.

Featuring guest appearances by other writers such as Fred Chappell, Max Steele, and Annie Dillard plus cameos by the likes of Patty Hearst, Richard Nixon, and Bon Jovi, Adventures in Pen Land celebrates writing as a form of play that Gingher has never outgrown. The lighthearted illustrations by novelist Daniel Wallace (author of Big Fish) serve to reinforce this refreshing message as they depict one writer and her imagination growing up together.
 
Adventures in Pen Land conveys a writer’s sheer doggedness, with a few bones of advice tossed in along the way. Candid and irreverent, but always humane, this memoir is must reading for fans of Southern literature, students of creative writing, and anyone who can’t resist the treat of reading about a writer’s resilience and dedication to her craft.
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Against Art
(The Notebooks)
Tomas Espedal
Seagull Books, 2010

In contemporary Norwegian fiction Tomas Espedal’s work stands out as uniquely personal; it can be difficult to separate the fiction from Espedal’s own experiences. In that vein, his novel Against Art is not just the story of a boy growing up to be a writer, but it is also the story of writing. Specifically, it is about the profession of writing—the routines, responsibility, and obstacles. Yet, Against Art is also about being a father, a son, and a grandson; about a family and a family’s tales, and about how preceding generations mark their successors. It is at once about choices and changes, about motion and rest, about moving to a new place, and about living.

 
Praise for the Norwegian Edition
“One of the most beautiful, most important books I've read for years.”—Klassekampen
 
“Espedal has written an amazingly rich novel, which will assuredly stand out as one of the year’s best and will also further fortify the quality of Norwegian literature abroad.”— Adresseavisen
 
Against Art attacks literature while at the same time being intensely literary. Our greatest sorrows and torments, the individual experiences often so anemic in art, find a voice of their own.”—Morgenbladet
 
Against Art moves me with its maternal history and proves yet again that Tomas Espedal writes great novels.”—Dag og Tid
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Alive in the Writing
Crafting Ethnography in the Company of Chekhov
Kirin Narayan
University of Chicago Press, 2012

Anton Chekhov is revered as a boldly innovative playwright and short story writer—but he wrote more than just plays and stories. In Alive in the Writing—an intriguing hybrid of writing guide, biography, and literary analysis—anthropologist and novelist Kirin Narayan introduces readers to some other sides of Chekhov: his pithy, witty observations on the writing process, his life as a writer through accounts by his friends, family, and lovers, and his venture into nonfiction through his book Sakhalin Island. By closely attending to the people who lived under the appalling conditions of the Russian penal colony on Sakhalin, Chekhov showed how empirical details combined with a literary flair can bring readers face to face with distant, different lives, enlarging a sense of human responsibility.

Highlighting this balance of the empirical and the literary, Narayan calls on Chekhov to bring new energy to the writing of ethnography and creative nonfiction alike. Weaving together selections from writing by and about him with examples from other talented ethnographers and memoirists, she offers practical exercises and advice on topics such as story, theory, place, person, voice, and self. A new and lively exploration of ethnography, Alive in the Writing shows how the genre’s attentive, sustained connection with the lives of others can become a powerful tool for any writer.

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All Is Leaf
Essays and Transformations
John T Price
University of Iowa Press, 2022
Drawing inspiration and urgency from the storied Goethe Oak tree at Buchenwald concentration camp—and from the leaf as symbol of all change, growth, and renewal—award-winning essayist John Price explores a multitude of dramatic transformations, in his life and in the fragile world beyond: “the how of the organism—that keeps your humanity alive.”

He employs an array of forms and voices, whether penning a break-up letter to America or a literary rock-n-roll road song dedicated to prairie scientists, or giving pregame pep talks to his son’s losing football team. Here, too, are moving portrayals of his father’s last effort as a small-town lawyer to defend the rights of abused women, and his own efforts as a writing teacher to honor the personal stories of his students.

From his Iowa backyard to the edge of the Arctic Circle, from the forgotten recesses of the body to the far reaches of the solar system, this book demonstrates the ways imagination and informed compassion can, as Price describes it, expand thousandfold the boundaries of what we might “have naïvely considered an individual self.”  
 
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All the Fun’s in How You Say a Thing
An Explanation of Meter and Versification
Timothy Steele
Ohio University Press, 1999
Perfect for the general reader of poetry, students and teachers of literature, and aspiring poets, All the Fun’s in How You Say a Thing is a lively and comprehensive study of versification by one of our best contemporary practitioners of traditional poetic forms. Emphasizing both the coherence and the diversity of English metrical practice from Chaucer’s time to ours, Timothy Steele explains how poets harmonize the fixed units of meter with the variable flow of idiomatic speech, and examines the ways in which poets have used meter, rhyme, and stanza to communicate and enhance meaning. Steele illuminates as well many practical, theoretical, and historical issues in English prosody, without ever losing sight of the fundamental pleasures, beauties, and insights that fine poems offer us. Written lucidly, with a generous selection of helpful scansions and explanations of the metrical effects of the great poets of the English language, All the Fun’s in How You Say a Thing is not only a valuable handbook on technique; it is also a wide-ranging study of English verse and a mine of entertaining information for anyone wishing more fully to write, enjoy, understand, or teach poetry.
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Among Friends
Engendering the Social Site of Poetry
Anne Dewey and Libbie Rifkin
University of Iowa Press, 2013
Philosophers and theorists have long recognized both the subversive and the transformative possibilities of friendship, the intimacy of which can transcend the impersonality of such identity categories as race, class, or gender. Unlike familial relations, friendships are chosen, opening a space of relative freedom in which to create and explore new identities. This process has been particularly valuable to poets marginalized by gender or sexuality since the second half of the twentieth century, as friendship provides both a buffer against and a wedge into predominantly male homosocial poetic communities.


Among Friends presents a richly theorized evocation of friendship as a fluid, critical social space, one that offers a vantage point from which to explore the gendering of poetic institutions and practices from the postwar period to the present. With friendship as an optic, the essays in this volume offer important new insights into the gender politics of the poetic avant-garde, since poetry as an institution has continued to be transformed by dramatic changes wrought by second-wave feminism, sexual liberation, and gay rights. These essays reveal the intimate social negotiations that fight, fracture, and queer the conventions of authority and community that have long constrained women poets and the gendering of poetic subjectivities.


From this shared perspective, the essays collected here investigate a historically and aesthetically wide-ranging array of subjects: from Joanne Kyger and Philip Whalen’s trans-Pacific friendship, to Patti Smith’s grounding of her punk persona in the tension between her romantic friendships with male artists and her more professional connections to the poets of the St. Mark’s scene, and from the gender dynamics of the Language School to the Flarf network’s reconception of poetic community in the digital age and the Black Took Collective’s creation of an intimate poetics of performance. Together, these explorations of poetic friendship open up new avenues for interrogating contemporary American poetry. 

Contributors: Maria Damon, Andrew Epstein, Ross Hair, Duriel E. Harris, Daniel Kane, Dawn Lundy Martin, Peter Middleton, Linda Russo, Lytle Shaw, Ann Vickery, Barrett Watten, Ronaldo V. Wilson
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Analogical Thinking
Post-Enlightenment Understanding in Language, Collaboration, and Interpretation
Ronald Schleifer
University of Michigan Press, 2001
Analogical Thinking argues that sometime around the turn of the twentieth century, a new mode of comprehension arose, supplementing received Enlightenment ideas concerning the nature of understanding and explanation. Focusing on the innovations of structural linguistics and its poststructural legacy, the individualism of Enlightenment knowledge and the collaborations of post-Enlightenment information, and practices of reading and interpretation across the arts and sciences, Analogical Thinking examines the ways in which analogical presentations of similarities respond to the experiences of twentieth-century culture.
The book traces this mode of thinking in linguistics, collaborative intellectual work in the arts and sciences, and interpretations of literary and sacred texts, concluding with a reading of the concept of Enlightenment in a comparison of Descartes and Foucault. The book examines the poststructuralism of Derrida; the collaborations of information theory and modern science as opposed to the individualism of Adam Smith and others, and analogical interpretations of Yeats, Dinesen, the Bible, Dreiser, and Mailer. Its overall aim is to present an interdisciplinary examination of a particular kind of understanding that responds to the experiences of our time.
Ronald Schleifer is Professor of English, University of Oklahoma. His books include Rhetoric and Death: The Language of Modernism and Postmodern Discourse Theory, Criticism and Culture; and Culture and Cognition: The Boundaries of Literary and Scientific Inquiry.
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The Anonymous Renaissance
Cultures of Discretion in Tudor-Stuart England
Marcy L. North
University of Chicago Press, 2003
"The Anonymous Renaissance offers a paradigm-shifting look at print culture in early modern England. North demonstrates through sound historical discussions and readings that anonymity was one of the defining practices of Renaissance authorship. It is difficult to overstate the originality and importance of this new study."-Jennifer Summit, Stanford University

The Renaissance was in many ways the beginning of modern and self-conscious authorship, a time when individual genius was celebrated and an author's name could become a book trade commodity. Why, then, did anonymous authorship flourish during the Renaissance rather than disappear? In addressing this puzzle, Marcy L. North reveals the rich history and popularity of anonymity during this period.

The book trade, she argues, created many intriguing and paradoxical uses for anonymity, even as the authorial name became more marketable. Among ecclesiastical debaters, for instance, anonymity worked to conceal identity, but it could also be used to identify the moral character of the author being concealed. In court and coterie circles, meanwhile, authors turned name suppression into a tool for the preservation of social boundaries. Finally, in both print and manuscript, anonymity promised to liberate an authentic female voice, and yet made it impossible to authenticate the gender of an author. In sum, the writers and book producers who helped to create England's literary culture viewed anonymity as a meaningful and useful practice.

Written with clarity and grace, The Anonymous Renaissance will fill a prominent gap in the study of authorship and English literary history.
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Another Steven Soderbergh Experience
Authorship and Contemporary Hollywood
By Mark Gallagher
University of Texas Press, 2013

How do we determine authorship in film, and what happens when we look in-depth at the creative activity of living filmmakers rather than approach their work through the abstract prism of auteur theory? Mark Gallagher uses Steven Soderbergh’s career as a lens through which to re-view screen authorship and offer a new model that acknowledges the fundamentally collaborative nature of authorial work and its circulation. Working in film, television, and digital video, Soderbergh is the most prolific and protean filmmaker in contemporary American cinema. At the same time, his activity typifies contemporary screen industry practice, in which production entities, distribution platforms, and creative labor increasingly cross-pollinate.

Gallagher investigates Soderbergh’s work on such films as The Limey, Erin Brockovich, Ocean’s Eleven and its sequels, Solaris, The Good German, Che, and The Informant!, as well as on the K Street television series. Dispensing with classical auteurist models, he positions Soderbergh and authorship in terms of collaborative production, location filming activity, dealmaking and distribution, textual representation, genre and adaptation work, critical reception, and other industrial and cultural phenomena. Gallagher also addresses Soderbergh’s role as standard-bearer for U.S. independent cinema following 1989’s sex, lies and videotape, as well as his cinephilic dialogues with different forms of U.S. and international cinema from the 1920s through the 1970s. Including an extensive new interview with the filmmaker, Another Steven Soderbergh Experience demonstrates how industries and institutions cultivate, recognize, and challenge creative screen artists.

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The Answers Are Inside the Mountains
Meditations on the Writing Life
William Stafford, Edited by Paul Merchant & Vincent Wixon
University of Michigan Press, 2003
A volume in the Poets on Poetry series, which collects critical works by contemporary poets, gathering together the articles, interviews, and book reviews by which they have articulated the poetics of a new generation.
In this fourth collection of reflections on writing and the writing life, the late William Stafford's lifelong refusal to separate his work from the task of living responsibly -- "What a person is shows up in what a person does" -- rings clear.
The Answers Are Inside the Mountains collects unpublished interviews, poems, articles, aphorisms, and writing exercises from this great American man of letters and hugely prolific author, who kept a journal for nearly half a century and produced over 20,000 poems -- a staggering output by any standard.
The book begins with the words "To overwhelm by rightness," a phrase evoking the two demands Stafford made on himself: to write daily, and to live uprightly. The Answers Are Inside the Mountains lives up to those deceptively simple ethics, and confirms William Stafford's enduringly important voice for our uncertain age.
William Stafford (1914-93) authored more than thirty-five books of poetry and prose, including the highly acclaimed Writing the Australian Crawl, You Must Revise Your Life, Crossing Unmarked Snow: Further Views on the Writer's Vocation, and Traveling Through the Dark, winner of the National Book Award for Poetry.
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Antiphon the Athenian
Oratory, Law, and Justice in the Age of the Sophists
By Michael Gagarin
University of Texas Press, 2002

Winner, Friends of the Dallas Public Library Award from the Texas Institute of Letters, 2003

Antiphon was a fifth-century Athenian intellectual (ca. 480-411 BCE) who created the profession of speechwriting while serving as an influential and highly sought-out adviser to litigants in the Athenian courts. Three of his speeches are preserved, together with three sets of Tetralogies (four hypothetical paired speeches), whose authenticity is sometimes doubted. Fragments also survive of intellectual treatises on subjects including justice, law, and nature (physis), which are often attributed to a separate Antiphon the Sophist. Were these two Antiphons really one and the same individual, endowed with a wide-ranging mind ready to tackle most of the diverse intellectual interests of his day?

Through an analysis of all these writings, this book convincingly argues that they were composed by a single individual, Antiphon the Athenian. Michael Gagarin sets close readings of individual works within a wider discussion of the fifth-century Athenian intellectual climate and the philosophical ferment known as the sophistic movement. This enables him to demonstrate the overall coherence of Antiphon's interests and writings and to show how he was a pivotal figure between the sophists and the Attic orators of the fourth century. In addition, Gagarin's argument allows us to reassess the work of the sophists as a whole, so that they can now be seen as primarily interested in logos (speech, argument) and as precursors of fourth-century rhetoric, rather than in their usual role as foils for Plato.

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The Art of Creative Research
A Field Guide for Writers
Philip Gerard
University of Chicago Press, 2017
All writers conduct research. For some this means poring over records and combing, archives but for many creative writers research happens in the everyday world—when they scribble an observation on the subway, when they travel to get the feel for a city, or when they strike up a conversation with an interesting stranger.

The Art of Creative Research helps writers take this natural inclination to explore and observe and turn it into a workable—and enjoyable—research plan. It shows that research shouldn’t be seen as a dry, plodding aspect of writing. Instead, it’s an art that all writers can master, one that unearths surprises and fuels imagination. This lends authenticity to fiction and poetry as well as nonfiction.

Philip Gerard distills the process into fundamental questions: How do you conduct research? And what can you do with the information you gather? He covers both in-person research and work in archives and illustrates how the different types of research can be incorporated into stories, poems, and essays using examples from a wide range of writers in addition to those from his own projects. Throughout, Gerard brings knowledge from his seasoned background into play, drawing on his experiences as a reporter and a writer of both fiction and nonfiction. His enthusiasm for adventure is infectious and will inspire writers to step away from the keyboard and into the world.
“Research can take you to that golden intersection where the personal meets the public, the private crosses the universal, where the best literature lives,” Gerard writes. With his masterly guidance, anyone can become an expert in artful investigation.
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The Art of Criticism
Henry James on the Theory and the Practice of Fiction
Henry James
University of Chicago Press, 1986
In The Art of Criticism, William Veeder and Susan M. Griffin have brought together for the first time the best of the Master's critical work: the most important of his Prefaces, which R. P. Blackmur has called "the most sustained and I think the most eloquent and original piece of literary criticism in existence"; his studies of Hawthorne, George Eliot, Balzac, Zola, de Maupassant, Turgenev, Sante-Beuve, and Arnold; and his essays on the function of criticism and the future of the novel.

The editors have provided what James himself emphasized in his literary criticism—the text's context. Each selection is framed by an editorial commentary and notes which give its biographical, bibliographical, and critical background and cite other references in James' work to the topic discussed. This framework, along with the editors' introduction, gives the reader a sense of the place of these pieces in the history of criticism.
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Artist, Audience, Accomplice
Ethics and Authorship in Art of the 1970s and 1980s
Sydney Stutterheim
Duke University Press, 2024
In Artist, Audience, Accomplice, Sydney Stutterheim introduces a new figure into the history of performance art and related practices of the 1970s and 1980s: the accomplice. Occupying roles including eyewitness, romantic partner, studio assistant, and documenter, this figure is situated between the conventional subject positions of the artist and the audience. The unseen and largely unacknowledged contributions of such accomplices exceed those performed by a typical audience because they share in the responsibility for producing artworks that entail potential ethical or legal transgressions. Stutterheim analyzes the art of Chris Burden, Hannah Wilke, Martin Kippenberger, and Lorraine O’Grady, showing how each cannily developed strategies of shared culpability that invoked questions about the accomplice’s various rights and roles. In this way, Stutterheim argues that the artist’s authority is not sovereign, total, or exclusive, but rather fluid and relational. By examining the development of an alternative model of participatory art that relies on a network of accomplices, Stutterheim radically revises current understandings of artistic agency, aesthetic property, and acknowledged authorship.
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Artistic License
The Philosophical Problems of Copyright and Appropriation
Darren Hudson Hick
University of Chicago Press, 2017
The art scene today is one of appropriation—of remixing, reusing, and recombining the works of other artists. From the musical mash-ups of Girl Talk to the pop-culture borrowings of Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons, it’s clear that the artistic landscape is shifting—which leads to some tricky legal and philosophical questions. In this up-to-date, thorough, and accessible analysis of the right to copyright, Darren Hudson Hick works to reconcile the growing practice of artistic appropriation with innovative views of artists’ rights, both legal and moral.

Engaging with long-standing debates about the nature of originality, authorship, and artists’ rights, Hick examines the philosophical challenges presented by the role of intellectual property in the artworld and vice versa. Using real-life examples of artists who have incorporated copyrighted works into their art, he explores issues of artistic creation and the nature of infringement as they are informed by analytical aesthetics and legal and critical theory. Ultimately, Artistic License provides a critical and systematic analysis of the key philosophical issues that underlie copyright policy, rethinking the relationship between artist, artwork, and the law.
 
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The Ascension of Authorship
Attribution and Canon Formation in Jewish, Hellenistic, and Christian Traditions
Jed Wyrick
Harvard University Press, 2004

The Ascension of Authorship traces the history of the idea of the author in the ancient world, beginning with the attribution practices of Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism. Jed Wyrick explores the testimony of Josephus on the succession of prophetic scribes and their superiority to Greek historiographers, and interprets the formation of the biblical canon in this light.

The Ascension of Authorship also examines the Greek scholarly methodology that questioned traditional connections between names and texts, a methodology perfected by Hellenistic grammarians and inherited by early Christian scholars. Wyrick argues that the fusion of Jewish and Hellenistic approaches toward attribution helped lead to St. Augustine’s reinvention of the writer of scripture as an author whose texts were governed by both divine will and human intent.

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Assimilating Asians
Gendered Strategies of Authorship in Asian America
Patricia P. Chu
Duke University Press, 2000
One of the central tasks of Asian American literature, argues Patricia P. Chu, has been to construct Asian American identities in the face of existing, and often contradictory, ideas about what it means to be an American. Chu examines the model of the Anglo-American bildungsroman and shows how Asian American writers have adapted it to express their troubled and unstable position in the United States. By aligning themselves with U.S. democratic ideals while also questioning the historical realities of exclusion, internment, and discrimination, Asian American authors, contends Chu, do two kinds of ideological work: they claim Americanness for Asian Americans, and they create accounts of Asian ethnicity that deploy their specific cultures and histories to challenge established notions of Americanness.
Chu further demonstrates that Asian American male and female writers engage different strategies in the struggle to adapt, reflecting their particular, gender-based relationships to immigration, work, and cultural representation. While offering fresh perspectives on the well-known writings—both fiction and memoir—of Maxine Hong Kingston, Amy Tan, Bharati Mukherjee, Frank Chin, and David Mura, Assimilating Asians also provides new insight into the work of less recognized but nevertheless important writers like Carlos Bulosan, Edith Eaton, Younghill Kang, Milton Murayama, and John Okada. As she explores this expansive range of texts—published over the course of the last century by authors of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, and Indian origin or descent—Chu is able to illuminate her argument by linking it to key historical and cultural events.
Assimilating Asians makes an important contribution to the fields of Asian American, American, and women’s studies. Scholars of Asian American literature and culture, as well as of ethnicity and assimilation, will find particular interest and value in this book.
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Authentic Writing
Jeffrey Rice
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2021
In typical academic circles, texts must be critiqued, mined for the obfuscated meanings they hide, and shown to reveal larger, broader meanings than what are initially evident. To engage in this type of writing is to perform an authentic version of scholarship. But what if a scholar chooses instead to write without critique? What if they write about travelling, their children, food, grocery shopping, frozen garlic bread, sandwiches, condiments, falafel, yoga, and moments that normally wouldn’t be considered scholarly? Can the writing still be scholarly? Can scholarly writing be authentic if its topics comprise the everyday?

In Authentic Writing, Jeff Rice uses this question to trace a position regarding critique, the role of the scholar, the role of the personal in scholarship, the banal as subject matter, and the idea of authenticity. He explores authenticity as a writing issue, a rhetorical issue, a consumption issue, a culture issue, and an ideological issue. Rather than arguing for a more authentic state or practice, Rice examines the rhetorical features of authenticity in order to expand the focus of scholarship.
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Author Unknown
The Power of Anonymity in Ancient Rome
Tom Geue
Harvard University Press, 2019

An exploration of the darker corners of ancient Rome to spotlight the strange sorcery of anonymous literature.

From Banksy to Elena Ferrante to the unattributed parchments of ancient Rome, art without clear authorship fascinates and even offends us. Classical scholarship tends to treat this anonymity as a problem or game—a defect to be repaired or mystery to be solved. Author Unknown is the first book to consider anonymity as a site of literary interest rather than a gap that needs filling. We can tether each work to an identity, or we can stand back and ask how the absence of a name affects the meaning and experience of literature.

Tom Geue turns to antiquity to show what the suppression or loss of a name can do for literature. Anonymity supported the illusion of Augustus’s sprawling puppet mastery (Res Gestae), controlled and destroyed the victims of a curse (Ovid’s Ibis), and created out of whole cloth a poetic persona and career (Phaedrus’s Fables). To assume these texts are missing something is to dismiss a source of their power and presume that ancient authors were as hungry for fame as today’s.

In this original look at Latin literature, Geue asks us to work with anonymity rather than against it and to appreciate the continuing power of anonymity in our own time.

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Authoring
An Essay for the English Profession on Potentiality and Singularity
Janis Haswell and Richard Haswell
Utah State University Press, 2010
The postmodern conviction that meaning is indeterminate and self is an illusion, though fascinating and defensible in theory, leaves a number of scholarly and pedagogical questions unsatisfied. Authoring—the  phenomenological act or felt sense of creating a text—is “a remarkably black box,” say Haswell and Haswell, yet it should be one of the central preoccupations of scholars in English studies. Not only can the study of authoring accommodate the “social turn” since postmodernism, they argue, but it accommodates as well conceptions of, and the lived experience of, personal potentiality and singularity.
      Without abandoning the value of postmodern perspectives, Haswell and Haswell use their own perspective of authorial potentiality and singularity to reconsider staple English-studies concerns such as gender, evaluation, voice, character, literacy, feminism, self, interpretation, assessment, signature, and taste. The essay is unique as well in the way that its authors embrace often competing realms of English studies, drawing examples and arguments equally from literary and compositionist research.
      In the process, the Haswells have created a Big Idea book, and a critique of the field. Their point is clear: the singular person/mysterious black box/author merits deeper consideration than we have given it, and the book’s crafted and woven explorations provide the intellectual tools to move beyond both political divisions and theoretical impasses.
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The Author's Due
Printing and the Prehistory of Copyright
Joseph Loewenstein
University of Chicago Press, 2002
The Author's Due offers an institutional and cultural history of books, the book trade, and the bibliographic ego. Joseph Loewenstein traces the emergence of possessive authorship from the establishment of a printing industry in England to the passage of the 1710 Statute of Anne, which provided the legal underpinnings for modern copyright. Along the way he demonstrates that the culture of books, including the idea of the author, is intimately tied to the practical trade of publishing those books.

As Loewenstein shows, copyright is a form of monopoly that developed alongside a range of related protections such as commercial trusts, manufacturing patents, and censorship, and cannot be understood apart from them. The regulation of the press pitted competing interests and rival monopolistic structures against one another—guildmembers and nonprofessionals, printers and booksellers, authors and publishers. These struggles, in turn, crucially shaped the literary and intellectual practices of early modern authors, as well as early capitalist economic organization.

With its probing look at the origins of modern copyright, The Author's Due will prove to be a watershed for historians, literary critics, and legal scholars alike.
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The Author's Handbook
Franklynn Peterson and Judi Kesselman-Turkel
University of Wisconsin Press, 2006

Providing essential guidance for both aspiring and experienced authors, the second edition of The Author’s Handbook is a valuable resource for writers of all levels. Extensively updated and expanded to account for significant changes in the publishing industry, The Author’s Handbook outlines effective techniques to develop marketable book ideas, research those ideas, and write a manuscript—either fiction or nonfiction—for publication. The authors provide many tips on topics that include choosing a publisher, negotiating contracts, understanding legal matters, and promoting your work. With this guide, the reader will gain insight into virtually every aspect of publishing.

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Authors in Court
Scenes from the Theater of Copyright
Mark Rose
Harvard University Press, 2016

Through a series of vivid case studies, Authors in Court charts the 300-year-long dance between authorship and copyright that has shaped each institution’s response to changing social norms of identity, privacy, and celebrity.

“A literary historian by training, Rose is completely at home in the world of law, as well as the history of photography and art. This is the work of an interdisciplinary scholar at the height of his powers. The arguments are sophisticated and the elegant text is a work of real craftsmanship. It is superb.”
—Lionel Bently, University of Cambridge

Authors in Court is well-written, erudite, informative, and engaging throughout. As the chapters go along, we see the way that personalities inflect the supposedly impartial law; we see the role of gender in authorial self-fashioning; we see some of the fault lines which produce litigation; and we get a nice history of the evolution of the fair use doctrine. This is a book that should at least be on reserve for any IP–related course. Going forward, no one writing about any of the cases Rose discusses can afford to ignore his contribution.”
—Lewis Hyde, Kenyon College

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Authorship in Film Adaptation
Edited with an introduction by Jack Boozer
University of Texas Press, 2008

Authoring a film adaptation of a literary source not only requires a media conversion but also a transformation as a result of the differing dramatic demands of cinema. The most critical central step in this transformation of a literary source to the screen is the writing of the screenplay. The screenplay usually serves to recruit producers, director, and actors; to attract capital investment; and to give focus to the conception and production of the film project. Often undergoing multiple revisions prior to production, the screenplay represents the crucial decisions of writer and director that will determine how and to what end the film will imitate or depart from its original source.

Authorship in Film Adaptation is an accessible, provocative text that opens up new areas of discussion on the central process of adaptation surrounding the screenplay and screenwriter-director collaboration. In contrast to narrow binary comparisons of literary source text and film, the twelve essays in this collection also give attention to the underappreciated role of the screenplay and film pre-production that can signal the primary intention for a film. Divided into four parts, this collection looks first at the role of Hollywood's activist producers and major auteurs such as Hitchcock and Kubrick as they worked with screenwriters to formulate their audio-visual goals. The second part offers case studies of Devil in a Blue Dress and The Sweet Hereafter, for which the directors wrote their own adapted screenplays. Considering the variety of writer-director working relationships that are possible, Part III focuses on adaptations that alter genre, time, and place, and Part IV investigates adaptations that alter stories of romance, sexuality, and ethnicity.

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Authorship in the Long Eighteenth Century
Dustin Griffin
University of Delaware Press, 2014
This book deals with changing conditions and conceptions of authorship in the long eighteenth century, a period often said to have witnessed the birth of the modern author. It focuses not on authorial self-presentation or self-revelation but on an author’s interactions with booksellers, collaborators, rivals, correspondents, patrons, and audiences. Challenging older accounts of the development of authorship in the period as well as newer claims about the “public sphere” and the “professional writer,” it engages with recent work on print culture and the history of the book. Methodologically eclectic, it moves from close readings to strategic contextualization. The book is organized both chronologically and topically. Early chapters deal with writers – notably Milton and Dryden – at the beginning of the long eighteenth century, and later chapters focus more on writers — among them Johnson, Gray, and Gibbon — toward its end. Looking beyond the traditional canon, it considers a number of little-known or little-studied writers, including Richard Bentley, Thomas Birch, William Oldys, James Ralph, and Thomas Ruddiman. Some of the essays are organized around a single writer, but most deal with a broad topic – literary collaboration, literary careers, the republic of letters, the alleged rise of the “professional writer,” and the rather different figure of the “author by profession.”

Published by University of Delaware Press. Distributed worldwide by Rutgers University Press.
 
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The Authorship of Place
A Cultural Geography of the New Chinese Cinemas
Dennis Lo
Hong Kong University Press, 2020
The Authorship of Place is the first monograph dedicated to the study of the politics, history, aesthetics, and practices of location shooting for Taiwanese, Mainland Chinese, and coproduced art cinemas shot in rural communities since the late 1970s. Dennis Lo argues that rural location shooting, beyond serving aesthetic and technical needs, constitutes practices of cultural survival in a region beset with disruptive and disorienting social changes, including rapid urbanization, geopolitical shifts, and ecological crises. In response to these social changes, auteurs like Hou Xiaoxian, Jia Zhangke, Chen Kaige, and Li Xing engaged in location shooting to transform sites of film production into symbolically meaningful places of collective memories and aspirations. These production practices ultimately enabled auteurs to experiment with imagining Taiwanese, Mainland Chinese, and cross-strait communities in novel and contentious ways. Deftly guiding readers on a cross-strait tour of prominent shooting locations for the New Chinese Cinemas, this book shows how auteurs sought out their disappearing cultural heritage by reenacting lived experiences of nation building, homecoming, and cultural salvage while shooting on-location. This was an especially daunting task when auteurs encountered the shooting locations as spaces of unresolved historical, social, and geopolitical contestations, tensions which were only intensified by the impact of filmmaking on rural communities. This book demonstrates how these complex circumstances surrounding location shooting were pivotal in shaping both representations of the rural on-screen, as well as the production communities, institutions, and industries off-screen. Informed by cutting-edge perspectives in cultural geography and media anthropology, The Authorship of Place both revises Chinese-language film history and theorizes groundbreaking approaches for investigating the cultural politics of film authorship and production.
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Autobiographical Writing Across the Disciplines
A Reader
Diane P. Freedman and Olivia Frey, eds.
Duke University Press, 2003
Autobiographical Writing Across the Disciplines reveals the extraordinary breadth of the intellectual movement toward self-inclusive scholarship. Presenting exemplary works of criticism incorporating personal narratives, this volume brings together twenty-seven essays from scholars in literary studies and history, mathematics and medicine, philosophy, music, film, ethnic studies, law, education, anthropology, religion, and biology. Pioneers in the development of the hybrid genre of personal scholarship, the writers whose work is presented here challenge traditional modes of inquiry and ways of knowing. In assembling their work, editors Diane P. Freedman and Olivia Frey have provided a rich source of reasons for and models of autobiographical criticism.

The editors’ introduction presents a condensed history of academic writing, chronicles the origins of autobiographical criticism, and emphasizes the role of feminism in championing the value of personal narrative to disciplinary discourse. The essays are all explicitly informed by the identities of their authors, among whom are a feminist scientist, a Jewish filmmaker living in Germany, a potential carrier of Huntington’s disease, and a doctor pregnant while in medical school. Whether describing how being a professor of ethnic literature necessarily entails being an activist, how music and cooking are related, or how a theology is shaped by cultural identity, the contributors illuminate the relationship between their scholarly pursuits and personal lives and, in the process, expand the boundaries of their disciplines.

Contributors:

Kwame Anthony Appiah
Ruth Behar
Merrill Black
David Bleich
James Cone
Brenda Daly
Laura B. DeLind
Carlos L. Dews
Michael Dorris
Diane P. Freedman
Olivia Frey
Peter Hamlin
Laura Duhan Kaplan
Perri Klass
Muriel Lederman
Deborah Lefkowitz
Eunice Lipton
Robert D. Marcus
Donald Murray
Seymour Papert
Carla T. Peterson
David Richman
Sara Ruddick
Julie Tharp
Bonnie TuSmith
Alex Wexler
Naomi Weisstein
Patricia Williams

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Available Surfaces
Essays on Poesis
T. R. Hummer
University of Michigan Press, 2012

In Available Surfaces, T. R. Hummer explores the art of making both poetry and music, and of the concept of "making" itself. He draws on childhood experiences and experiences as an adult, as a poet, and as an explorer of unworldly spaces to examine that "something ineffable about the process of making of which the poem is the exemplary artifact."

Hummer grew up in the deep South, and spent many of his high school years playing saxophone in various rock and roll bands before he met poetry. This musical influence is visible in his work: he often discusses poetry together with music, or music with poetry, and his career has included both writing and performance.

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