In 1969 Peter Matthiessen set out with the expedition led by Peter Gimbel, whose aim was to find and film underwater for the first time the most dangerous of all sea creatures - the great white shark. Acting as the expedition's chronicler and spare hand (both on the surface and below), Matthiessen accompanied the crew from the Carribean to the whaling grounds off the Durban coast, to various islands in the Indian Ocean, to Ceylon, and finally to success off the bleak south coast of Australia. Blue Meridian records the awesome experience of swimming in open water among hundreds of sharks, the beauties of strange seas and landscapes and the camaraderie, humour and tension of people who live in close proximity and risk their lives day by day.
Twenty-nine collected essays represent a critical history of Shakespeare's play as text and as theater, beginning with Samuel Johnson in 1765, and ending with a review of the Royal Shakespeare Company production in 1991. The criticism centers on three aspects of the play: the love/friendship debate.
"The results of this meticulously researched reconstruction are breathtaking and will change Toomer studies forever. . . . A truly exceptional piece of literary and historical scholarship."--Vera M. Kutzinski, Yale University
The Cambridge Companion to American Modernism provides a comprehensive and authoritative overview of American literary modernism from 1890 to 1939. These original essays by twelve distinguished scholars of international reputation offer critical overviews of the major genres, literary culture, and social contexts that define the current state of Modern American literature and cultural studies. Among the diverse topics covered are nationalism, race, gender and the impact of music and visual arts on literary modernism, as well as overviews of the achievements of American modernism in fiction, poetry and drama. The book concludes with a chapter on modern American criticism. An essential reference guide to the field, the Companion offers readers a chronology of key events and publication dates covering the first half of the twentieth century in the United States, and a bibliography of further reading organized by chapter topics.
Barack Obama’s historic presidency has re-inserted mixed race into the national conversation. While the troubled and pejorative history of racial amalgamation throughout U.S. history is a familiar story, The United States of the United Races reconsiders an understudied optimist tradition, one which has praised mixture as a means to create a new people, bring equality to all, and fulfill an American destiny. In this genealogy, Greg Carter re-envisions racial mixture as a vehicle for pride and a way for citizens to examine mixed America as a better America. Tracing the centuries-long conversation that began with Hector St. John de Crevecoeur’s Letters of an American Farmer in the 1780s through to the Mulitracial Movement of the 1990s and the debates surrounding racial categories on the U.S. Census in the twenty-first century, Greg Carter explores a broad range of documents and moments, unearthing a new narrative that locates hope in racial mixture. Carter traces the reception of the concept as it has evolved over the years, from and decade to decade and century to century, wherein even minor changes in individual attitudes have paved the way for major changes in public response. The United States of the United Races sweeps away an ugly element of U.S. history, replacing it with a new understanding of race in America.
A great deal of mystery surrounds G.I. Gurdjieff and "The Work." Today, many on the path of self-exploration find themselves drawn to the symbolism of the enneagram, and to Gurdjieff's other teachings. Gurdjieff was undeniably charismatic many famous and influential people lived in his "shadow," accepting his guidance while changing and transforming their lives. Shadows of Heaven focuses on the relationship between Gurdjieff and the poet-novelist Nathan Jean Toomer, from 1924 until Gurdjieff's death in 1949, as well as each man's relationship with Edith Annesley Taylor and her son Paul, the author of this book. Caught in the middle of this tense triad of interests was the English critic-publisher A.R. Orage, who was close to all three parties, and whose wife, Jessie, was Edith's best friend. Paul Taylor's unique life experience has made it possible for him to combine his mother's memoir's conversations between Toomer and Gurdjieff, and entries from Jessie Orage's diary into this fascinating book. It is probably the first to reveal something of Gurdjieff's "love life" with the mothers of his children. Several new descriptions of Gurdjieff's voyages with his pupils reveal aspects of Gurdjieff's character not documented elsewhere. Excerpts from Jessie Orage's diaries testify to the magnetic attraction Gurdjieff exercised over those he felt were viral to the dissemination of his ideas. With 16 pages of never-before published photographs, this book presents a fresh new picture of Gurdjieff and his teaching, adding to his legend a tangible humanity to which we can all relate.
Jean Toomer achieved instant recognition as a critic and thinker in 1923 with the publication of his novel Cane, a harsh, eloquent vision of black American hardship and suffering. But because of his reclusive, introspective nature, Toomer's fame waned in later years, and today his other contributions to American thought and literature are all but forgotten. Now, this collection of unpublished writings restores a crucial dimension to our understanding of this important African American author. Thematically arranging letters, sketches, poems, autobiography, short stories, a play, and a children's story, Frederik Rusch offers insight into Toomer's mind and spirituality, his feelings on racial identity in America, and his attitudes toward and ideas about Cane. Rusch highlights Toomer's reflections on America, its people, landscape, and politics, reveals his significance for the problems and issues of today, and helps us understand Toomer not only as writer, but also as social critic, prophet, mystic, and idealist. Exploring Toomer's attempts to find self-realization and transcend social and cultural definitions of race, this book offers a unique view of the United States through the life of one of its most significant and fascinating intellectuals.