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New York Times Book Review and Magazine

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The L M Montgomery Reader

Author: Benjamin Lefebvre
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
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The final volume of The L.M. Montgomery Reader, A Legacy in Review examines a long overlooked portion of Montgomery’s critical reception: reviews of her books. Although Montgomery downplayed the impact that reviews had on her writing career, claiming to be amused and tolerant of reviewers’ contradictory opinions about her work, she nevertheless cared enough to keep a large percentage of them in scrapbooks as an archive of her career. Edited by leading Montgomery scholar Benjamin Lefebvre, this volume presents more than four hundred reviews from eight countries that raise questions about and offer reflections on gender, genre, setting, character, audience, and nationalism, much of which anticipated the scholarship that has thrived in the last four decades. Lefebvre’s extended introduction and chapter headnotes place the reviews in the context of Montgomery’s literary career and trace the evolution of attitudes to her work, and his epilogue examines the reception of Montgomery’s books that were published posthumously. A comprehensive account of the reception of Montgomery’s books, published during and after her lifetime, A Legacy in Review is the illuminating final volume of this important new resource for L.M. Montgomery scholars and fans around the world.


Citizen Critics

Author: Rosa A. Eberly
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
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In this revealing study of the links among literature, rhetoric, and democracy, Rosa A. Eberly explores the public debate generated by amateur and professional readers about four controversial literary works: two that were censored in the United States and two that created conflict because they were not censored.In Citizen Critics Eberly compares the outrage sparked by the publication of James Joyce's Ulysses and Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer with the relative quiescence that greeted the much more violent and sexually explicit content of Bret Easton Ellis's American Psychoand Andrea Dworkin's Mercy. Through a close reading of letters to the editor, reviews, media coverage, and court cases, Eberly shows how literary critics and legal experts defused censorship debates by shifting the focus from content to aesthetics and from social values to publicity. By asserting their authority to pass judgments - thus denying the authority of citizen critics - these professionals effectively removed the discussion from literary public spheres.A passionate advocate for treating reading as a public and rhetorical enterprise rather than solely as a private one, Eberly suggests the potential impact a work of literature may have on the social polity if it is brought into public forums for debate rather than removed to the exclusive rooms of literary criticism. Eberly urges educators to use their classrooms as protopublic spaces in which students can learn to make the transition from private reader to public citizen.


Catalog of Copyright Entries

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Apocalypse Then

Author: Robert R. Tomes
Publisher: NYU Press
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Prior to the Vietnam war, American intellectual life rested comfortably on shared assumptions and often common ideals. Intellectuals largely supported the social and economic reforms of the 1930s, the war against Hitler's Germany, and U.S. conduct during the Cold War. By the early 1960s, a liberal intellectual consensus existed. The war in Southeast Asia shattered this fragile coalition, which promptly dissolved into numerous camps, each of which questioned American institutions, values, and ideals. Robert R. Tomes sheds new light on the demise of Cold War liberalism and the development of the New Left, and the steady growth of a conservatism that used Vietnam, and anti-war sentiment, as a rallying point. Importantly, Tomes provides new evidence that neoconservatism retreated from internationalism due largely to Vietnam, only to regroup later with substantially diminished goals and expectations. Covering vast archival terrain, Apocalypse Then stands as the definitive account of the impact of the Vietnam war on American intellectual life.


Jews and Judaism in The New York Times

Author: Christopher Vecsey, Ph.D
Publisher: Lexington Books
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Jews and Judaism have been profoundly affected by the horrific course of the Holocaust, and by the formation of Israel as a Jewish nation-state. These have been the major themes in the Times' treatment of Judaism, in thousands of articles, from the 1970s to the present.


Elizabeth Cady Stanton Feminist as Thinker

Author: Ellen Carol DuBois
Publisher: NYU Press
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More than one hundred years after her death, Elizabeth Cady Stanton still stands—along with her close friend Susan B. Anthony—as the major icon of the struggle for women’s suffrage. In spite of this celebrity, Stanton’s intellectual contributions have been largely overshadowed by the focus on her political activities, and she is yet to be recognized as one of the major thinkers of the nineteenth century. Here, at long last, is a single volume exploring and presenting Stanton’s thoughtful, original, lifelong inquiries into the nature, origins, range, and solutions of women’s subordination. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Feminist as Thinker reintroduces, contextualizes, and critiques Stanton’s numerous contributions to modern thought. It juxtaposes a selection of Stanton’s own writings, many of them previously unavailable, with eight original essays by prominent historians and social theorists interrogating Stanton’s views on such pressing social issues as religion, marriage, race, the self and community, and her place among leading nineteenth century feminist thinkers. Taken together, these essays and documents reveal the different facets, enduring insights, and fascinating contradictions of the work of one of the great thinkers of the feminist tradition. Contributors: Barbara Caine, Richard Cándida Smith, Ellen Carol DuBois, Ann D. Gordon, Vivian Gornick, Kathi Kern, Michele Mitchell, and Christine Stansell.


Understanding Colson Whitehead

Author: Derek C. Maus
Publisher: Univ of South Carolina Press
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Although 2002 MacArthur Fellowship recipient Colson Whitehead ardently resists overarching categorizations of his work, Derek C. Maus argues in this volume that Whitehead’s first six books are linked by a careful balance between adherence to and violation of the wisdom of past generations. Whitehead bids readers to come along with him on challenging, often open-ended literary excursions designed to reexamine accepted notions of truth. Understanding Colson Whitehead unravels the parallel structures found within Whitehead’s fiction from his 1999 novel The Intuitionist through 2011’s Zone One. In his choice of literary forms, Whitehead attempts to revitalize the limiting formulas to which they have been reduced by first imitating and then violating the conventions of those genres and sub-genres. Whitehead similarly tests subject matter, again imitating and then satirizing various forms of conventional wisdom as a means of calling out unexamined, ignored, and/or malevolent aspects of American culture. Although only one of many subjects that Whitehead addresses, race often takes a place of centrality in his works and, as such, serves as the prime example of how Whitehead asks his readers to revisit their assumptions about meanings and values. By jumbling the literary formulas of the detective novel, the heroic folktale, the coming-of-age story, and the zombie apocalypse, Whitehead reveals the flaws and shortcomings of many of the long-lasting stories through which Americans have defined themselves. Some of the stories Whitehead focuses on are explicitly literary in nature, but he more frequently directs his attention toward the historical and cultural processes that influence how race, class, gender, education, social status, and other categories of identity determine what an individual supposedly can and cannot do.


Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction

Author: Lex Williford
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
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From memoir to journalism, personal essays to cultural criticism, this indispensable anthology brings together works from all genres of creative nonfiction, with pieces by fifty contemporary writers including Cheryl Strayed, David Sedaris, Barbara Kingsolver, and more. Selected by five hundred writers, English professors, and creative writing teachers from across the country, this collection includes only the most highly regarded nonfiction work published since 1970. Contributers include: Jo Ann Beard, Wendell Berry, Eula Biss, Mary Clearman Blew, Charles Bowden, Janet Burroway, Kelly Grey Carlisle, Anne Carson, Bernard Cooper, Michael W. Cox, Annie Dillard, Mark Doty, Brian Doyle, Tony Earley, Anthony Farrington, Harrison Candelaria Fletcher, Diane Glancy, Lucy Grealy, William Harrison, Robin Hemley, Adam Hochschild, Jamaica Kincaid, Barbara Kingsolver , Ted Kooser, Sara Levine, E.J. Levy, Phillip Lopate, Barry Lopez, Thomas Lynch, Lee Martin, Rebecca McCLanahan, Erin McGraw, John McPhee, Brenda Miller, Dinty W. Moore, Kathleen Norris, Naomi Shihab Nye, Lia Purpura, Richard Rhodes, Bill Roorbach, David Sedaris, Richard Selzer, Sue William Silverman, Floyd Skloot, Lauren Slater, Cheryl Strayed, Amy Tan, Ryan Van Meter, David Foster Wallace, and Joy Williams.


Wild Dreams

Author: Carol Bonomo Albright
Publisher: Fordham Univ Press
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For more than thirty years, the journal Italian Americana has been home to the writers who have sparked an extraordinary literary explosion in Italian-American culture. Across twenty-five volumes, its poets, memoirists, story-tellers, and other voices bridged generations to forge a brilliant body of expressive works that help define an Italian-American imagination. Wild Dreams offers the very best from those pages: sixty-three pieces—fiction, memoir, poetry, story, and interview—that range widely in style and sentiment, tracing the arc of an immigrant culture’s coming of age in America. What stories do Italian Americans tell about themselves? How do some of America’s best writers deal with complicated questions of identity in their art? Organized by provocative themes—Ancestors, The Sacred and the Profane, Love and Anger, Birth and Death, Art and Self—the selections document the evolution of Italian-American literature. From John Fante’s “My Father’s God,” his classic story of religious subversion and memoirs by Dennis Barone and Jerre Mangione to a brace of poets, selected by Dana Gioia and Michael Palma, ranging from John Ciardi, Jay Parini, and Mary Jo Salter to George Guida and Rachel Guido de Vries. There are also stories alive with the Italian folk tradition (Tony Ardizzone and Louisa Ermelino), and others sleekly experimental (Mary Caponegro, Rosalind Palermo Stevenson). Other pieces—including an unforgettable interview with Camille Paglia—are Italian-American takes on the culture at large.