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WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE FOR NON-FICTION 2012Almost six hundred years ago, a short, genial man took a very old manuscript off a library shelf.
Bob Dylan’s songs have been the subject of countless interpretations. In fact, Dylan’s work is one of the fastest-growing research areas within the humanities, and the interest has increased dramatically since Dylan’s receipt of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2016.There is a distinguished history of scholarly work on Dylan. Textual scholars focus on Dylan’s lyrics, parsing out their verbal artistry and identifying their numerous and farflung sources.Historians and biographers try to clarify the details of Dylan’s life and the chronologies that link him with other notable figures and movements. Social scientists have focused on the cultures inspired by Dylan, the institutions and communities of fandom and appreciation which surround him.NEW APPROACHES TO BOB DYLAN break down the disciplinary silos that have kept these lines of work separate, to think about how lyrics, performances, personal history, and mass movements all coincide and shape one another. NEW APPROACHES TO BOB DYLAN is edited by Anne-Marie Mai and contains 16 essays and an interview with Horace Engdahl, The Swedish Academy. Among the contributors are Stephen Greenblatt, Sean Latham, Nina Goss, Johnathan Hodgers, Michael Gray and Gisle Selnes.
In Hamlet in Purgatory, renowned literary scholar Stephen Greenblatt delves into his longtime fascination with the ghost of Hamlet's father, and his daring and ultimately gratifying journey takes him through surprising intellectual territory. It yields an extraordinary account of the rise and fall of Purgatory as both a belief and a lucrative institution--as well as a capacious new reading of the power of Hamlet. In the mid-sixteenth century, English authorities abruptly changed the relationship between the living and dead. Declaring that Purgatory was a false "e;poem,"e; they abolished the institutions and banned the practices that Christians relied on to ease the passage to Heaven for themselves and their dead loved ones. Greenblatt explores the fantastic adventure narratives, ghost stories, pilgrimages, and imagery by which a belief in a grisly "e;prison house of souls"e; had been shaped and reinforced in the Middle Ages. He probes the psychological benefits as well as the high costs of this belief and of its demolition. With the doctrine of Purgatory and the elaborate practices that grew up around it, the church had provided a powerful method of negotiating with the dead. The Protestant attack on Purgatory destroyed this method for most people in England, but it did not eradicate the longings and fears that Catholic doctrine had for centuries focused and exploited. In his strikingly original interpretation, Greenblatt argues that the human desires to commune with, assist, and be rid of the dead were transformed by Shakespeare--consummate conjurer that he was--into the substance of several of his plays, above all the weirdly powerful Hamlet. Thus, the space of Purgatory became the stage haunted by literature's most famous ghost. This book constitutes an extraordinary feat that could have been accomplished by only Stephen Greenblatt. It is at once a deeply satisfying reading of medieval religion, an innovative interpretation of the apparitions that trouble Shakespeare's tragic heroes, and an exploration of how a culture can be inhabited by its own spectral leftovers. This expanded Princeton Classics edition includes a new preface by the author.
Selected as a book of the year 2017 by The Times and Sunday TimesHumans cannot live without stories. and we decide if the Fall is the unvarnished truth or fictional allegory. Ultimately, The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve allows us a new understanding of ourselves.
Both an enhanced digital edition-the first edited specifically for undergraduates-and a handsome print volume, The Norton Shakespeare, third edition, provides a freshly edited text, acclaimed apparatus and an unmatched value.
Shakespeare lived in a world of absolutes-of claims for the absolute authority of scripture, monarch, and God, and the authority of fathers over wives and children, the old over the young, and the gentle over the baseborn. Greenblatt shows that Shakespeare was averse to such absolutes and constantly probed the possibility of freedom from them.
Cultural Mobility is a blueprint and a model for understanding the patterns of meaning that human societies create. Drawn from a wide range of disciplines, the essays collected here under the distinguished editorial guidance of Stephen Greenblatt share the conviction that cultures, even traditional cultures, are rarely stable or fixed. Radical mobility is not a phenomenon of the twenty-first century alone, but is a key constituent element of human life in virtually all periods. Yet academic accounts of culture tend to operate on exactly the opposite assumption and to celebrate what they imagine to be rooted or whole or undamaged. To grasp the shaping power of colonization, exile, emigration, wandering, contamination, and unexpected, random events, along with the fierce compulsions of greed, longing, and restlessness, cultural analysis needs to operate with a new set of principles. An international group of authors spells out these principles and puts them into practice.
Shakespeare was a man of his time, constantly engaging with his audience's deepest desires and fears. In this book, by reconnecting with this historic reality we are able to experience the true character of the playwright himself. It traces Shakespeare's unfolding imaginative generosity.
A study of sixteenth-century life and literature that spawned an era of scholarly inquiry. The author examines the structure of selfhood as evidenced in major literary figures of the English Renaissance and finds that in the early modern period new questions surrounding the nature of identity heavily influenced the literature of the era.