Literature Studies

  • SHCM
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    Featuring summaries of the Bard's plays and characters, The Shakespeare Companion is the perfect read for anyone interested in his works, or those who are new to one of the most influential writers of all time.

    Complete with a foreword by Dame Judi Dench, this book will enlighten you about Shakespeare's writing and help you enjoy his plays even more. It provides synopses of plays and even a resume of each performance's history.

    There is also a look back at the history of Shakespearean theatre and those plays that he did not write that have been wrongly attributed to him.
  • MPSH
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    This visual exploration of the time in which William Shakespeare lived is filled with jaw-dropping facts and observations. It considers what The Bard was like as a man and covers the cultural changes that took place during his lifetime - 1564-1616.

    From the time of the Tudors to Elizabeth I's reign and the first of the Stuart kings, this book reflects the political changes that were reflected in his works and explains how he worked through maps and illustrations to look at how powerful people viewed their positions in the world.

    Author Jeremy Black also explores the locations of Shakespeare's plays and examines the reasons why he chose to set them in these locations.
  • ACLTV
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    Chambers Adult Learners' Guide to Spelling is not about all those turgid 'spelling rules'. Instead, it presents a practical routine that teaches learners strategies to conquer any word they find difficult and learn it for life. This new edition comes in a handy, more accessible format. The two-colour text is clearly and spaciously laid out, and plentiful examples, activities and illustrations reinforce the skills being learned.
  • ADBUW
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    The Penguin Writer's Manual is the essential companion for anyone who wants to master the art of writing good English. Whether you're composing an essay, sending a business letter or an email to a colleague, or firing off an angry letter to a newspaper, this guide will help you to brush up you communication skills and write correct and confident English.
  • AHYUJ
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    A book of wisdom and life. Welcome to Alice Taylor's garden: 'Just inside the gate, hand-painted on a rickety piece of timber, is a little sign: Miracles only grow where you plant them. I saw it in a garden centre and could not resist it. This garden is full of my lack of resistance. I have no in-depth gardening knowledge and I work on impulse. 'My gardening expertise, acquired through trial and error, is nurtured by the unbelievable pleasure that I have discovered in simply digging the earth. Where does that satisfaction come from? Maybe buried deep in each of us is the secret need to cultivate the soil. Digging the earth breathes life back into us.' A reflective and uplifting account by Alice Taylor of her love of nature and gardening.
  • AXBCZ
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    Voltaire (1694-1778), best remembered as the author of Candide, is one of the central actors - arguably the defining personality - of the European Enlightenment. In this Very Short Introduction, Nicholas Cronk explores Voltaire's remarkable career and demonstrates how his thinking is pivotal to our notion and understanding of the Enlightenment. In a fresh and modern examination of his writings, Cronk examines the nature of Voltaire's literary celebrity, demonstrating the extent to which his work was reactive and practical, and therefore made sense within the broader context of the debates to which he responded. The most famous living author in Europe in the 18th century, Cronk emphasises Voltaire's skills of 'performance' as a writer and his continued relevance today. He concludes by looking not only at Voltaire's impact in literature and philosophy, but also his influence on French political values and modern French politics. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
  • BBGYV
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    A modern sensibility suffused with urban sophistication. In everyday scenes he shows us what's most noble in human relationships, alongside the basest fears and anxieties. Irony and sarcasm somehow never seem to obscure the warmth of Karlis's voice and his attention to intimate details. This book represents Karlis at the peak of his poetic power: gripping, vivid and not a little romantic. Karlis himself says: "I try to say something that I would like to present as beautiful or, on the contrary, something that can not and must not be taken as beautiful."
  • AAFSB
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    A riotous collection of memoirs which explores the absurd hilarity of modern life and creates a wickedly incisive portrait of an all-too-familiar world. It takes Sedaris from his humiliating bout with obsessive behaviour in 'A Plague of Tics' to the title story, where he is finally forced to face his naked self in the company of lunatics. At this soulful and moving moment, he brushes cigarette ashes from his pubic hair and wonders what it all means. This remarkable journey into his own life follows a path of self- effacement and a lifelong search for identity leaving himself both under suspicion and over dressed.
  • AADTM
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    "A Room of One's Own", based on a lecture given at Girton College Cambridge, is one of the great feminist polemics. Woolf's blazing polemic on female creativity, the role of the writer, and the silent fate of Shakespeare's imaginary sister remains a powerful reminder of a woman's need for financial independence and intellectual freedom.
  • AADZY
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    This selection of Poe's critical writings, short fiction and poetry demonstrates an intense interest in aesthetic issues and the astonishing power and imagination with which he probed the darkest corners of the human mind. "The Fall of the House of Usher" describes the final hours of a family tormented by tragedy and the legacy of the past. In the "Tell Tale Heart", a murderer's insane delusions threaten to betray him, while stories such as "The Pit and the Pendulum" and the "Cask of Amontillado" explore extreme states of decadence, fear and hate.
  • AADUT
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    "Shooting an Elephant" is Orwell's searing and painfully honest account of his experience as a police officer in imperial Burma; killing an escaped elephant in front of a crowd 'solely to avoid looking a fool'. The other masterly essays in this collection include classics such as "My Country Right or Left", "How the Poor Die" and "Such, Such were the Joys", his memoir of the horrors of public school, as well as discussions of Shakespeare, sleeping rough, boys' weeklies and a spirited defence of English cooking. Opinionated, uncompromising, provocative and hugely entertaining, all show Orwell's unique ability to get to the heart of any subject.
  • AADTU
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    Jorge Luis Borges was a literary spellbinder whose tales of magic, mystery and murder are shot through with deep philosophical paradoxes. This collection brings together many of his stories, including the celebrated "Library of Babel".
  • AADUF
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    A searing account of George Orwell's observations of working-class life in the bleak industrial heartlands of Yorkshire and Lancashire in the 1930s, "The Road to Wigan Pier" is a brilliant and bitter polemic that has lost none of its political impact over time. His graphically unforgettable descriptions of social injustice, cramped slum housing, dangerous mining conditions, squalor, hunger and growing unemployment are written with unblinking honesty, fury and great humanity. It crystallized the ideas that would be found in Orwell's later works and novels, and remains a powerful portrait of poverty, injustice and class divisions in Britain.
  • ABJAO
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    'Anthology' comes from the Greek word that stands for garlands - a bouquet of flowers. An anthology then, should be a small token of something much larger. In the case of flowers, they bring to mind the colour & fragrance of the fields, of a season. Coelho's anthology, therefore, is not only a collection of texts or poems, but a gift, something arranged according to his sensitivities, to give to others. The selection of books presented in this volume have been chosen as if from a vast field of flowers, stretching infinitely into time's horizon. Coelho's selection is ordered in to the four elements, symbolizing both our world on all its directions, and the way we dwell in it, the way we say it. In 'Earth' we find writers as diverse as Oscar Wilde and D H Lawrence; in 'Air' Nelson Mandela and Gabriel Garcia Marques; in 'Fire' Rumi and Mary Shelley; and, in 'Water' Hans Christian Anderson and Machiavelli.
  • AAOMK
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    This collection of Vera Brittain's poetry and prose, some of it never published before, commemorates the men she loved - fiance, brother and two close friends - who served and died in the First World War. It draws on her experiences as a VAD nurse in London, Malta, and France, and illustrates her growing conviction of the wickedness of all war. Illustrated with many extraordinary photographs from Brittain's own albums, and edited with a new introduction by Mark Bostridge, BECAUSE YOU DIED is an elegy to men who lost their lives in a bloody conflict, and a beautiful volume of remembrance to mark the anniversary of the Armistice.
  • ABSCI
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    To read of Elizabeth I addressing her troops before the Spanish Armada, or Martin Luther- King urging the American population for racial equality is to understand the tremendous power of language to inspire, to comfort, to move, or to enthuse an audience. It is inspiring to hear the words of people whose gift was to know what to say, when to say it, and how to phrase it, often in language so powerful, so eloquent and so beautiful that we remember their words centuries after they were first spoken. Here is an enjoyable collection of the greatest speeches that have been delivered throughout history, prefaced by brief historical and biographical introductions. The book includes some of the greatest, most celebrated speeches, such as Pericles' funeral oration in Athens in the fifth century BC, as well as lesser known speeches, such as Lieutenant- Colonel Tim Collins' eve-of-battle address to his soldiers in Iraq in 2003 - all of which deserve to be celebrated and credited by modern audiences.
  • ABBLK
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    With this sixth volume The Hogarth Press completes a major literary undertaking - the publication of the complete essays of Virginia Woolf. In this, the last decade of her life, Woolf wrote distinguished literary essays on Turgenev, Goldsmith, Congreve, Gibbon and Horace Walpole. In addition, there are a number of more political essays, such as 'Why Art To-Day Follows Politics', 'Women Must Weep' (a cut-down version of Three Guineas and never before reprinted), 'Royalty' (rejected by Picture Post in 1939 as 'an attack on the Royal family, and on the institution of kingship in this country'), 'Thoughts on Peace in an Air Raid', and even 'America, which I Have Never Seen...' ('['Americans are] the most interesting people in the world - they face the future, not the past'). In 'The Leaning Tower' (1940), Virginia Woolf faced the future and looked forward to a more democratic post-war age: 'will there be no more towers and no more classes and shall we stand, without hedges between us, on the common ground?'. Woolf stimulates her readers to think for themselves, so she 'never forges manifestos, issues guidelines, or gives instructions that must be followed to the letter' (Maria DiBattista). In providing an authoritative text, introduction and annotations to Virginia Woolf's essays, Stuart N. Clarke has prepared a common ground - for students, common readers and scholars alike - so that all can come to Woolf without specialised knowledge.
  • ABTVC
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    From the love affair between a missionary and a drunkard to the mystery surrounding a death at sea, this collection gives a warm and humourous insight into life and history of life in the colonies and stands as a superbly entertaining and compelling testament to Maugham's skill and power as a short story writer.
  • ABRHN
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    How did George Eliot's love life affect her prose? Why did Kafka write at three in the morning? In what ways is Barack Obama like Eliza Doolittle? Can you be over-dressed for the Oscars? What is Italian Feminism? If Roland Barthes killed the Author, can Nabokov revive him? What does 'soulful' mean? Is Date Movie the worst film ever made? A collection of essays that brims over with personality and warmth, "Changing My Mind" is journalism at its most expansive, intelligent and funny - a gift to readers and writers both. Within its covers an essay is more than a column of opinions: it's a space in which to think freely.
  • ACFWQ
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    A hilarious collection of the many articles written by Stephen Fry for magazines, newspapers and radio. It includes selected wireless essays of Donald Trefusis, the ageing professor of philology brought to life in Fry's novel "The Liar", and the best of Fry's weekly column for the Daily Telegraph.
  • ACDZQ
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    A mesmeric collection of stories about love. In his characteristically unsentimental, elegant and spare prose, Schlink unveils characters and relationships haunted by betrayal and guilt, in situations where self-examination is inescapable. FLIGHTS OF LOVE consists of seven stories, all of them weaving around the idea of love - why people are drawn to it and why some run away. Schlink shows us in turn love as desire, love as confusion, love as a quick affair, love as a drastic life-changing rebellion, love as a force of habit, love as self-betrayal. The cumulative effect is a book which uses effortlessly beguiling language to examine the universal human desire to find a lasting loving relationship, however thwarted that desire ultimately is.
  • ACEFY
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    Complete collection of Tolkien's essays, including two on Beowulf, which span three decades beginning six years before The Hobbit to five years after The Lord of the Rings. The seven 'essays' by J.R.R. Tolkien assembled in this new paperback edition were with one exception delivered as general lectures on particular occasions; and while they mostly arose out of Tolkien's work in medieval literature, they are accessible to all. Two of them are concerned with Beowulf, including the well-known lecture whose title is taken for this book, and one with Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, given in the University of Glasgow in 1953. Also included in this volume is the lecture English and Welsh; the Valedictory Address to the University of Oxford in 1959; and a paper on Invented Languages delivered in 1931, with exemplification from poems in the Elvish tongues. Most famous of all is On Fairy-Stories, a discussion of the nature of fairy-tales and fantasy, which gives insight into Tolkien's approach to the whole genre. The pieces in this collection cover a period of nearly thirty years, beginning six years before the publication of The Hobbit, with a unique 'academic' lecture on his invention (calling it A Secret Vice) and concluding with his farewell to professorship, five years after the publication of The Lord of the Rings.
  • ACEMH
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    This volume gathers together for the first time in book form twenty-nine pieces on books, writing, photography and the 1995 Rugby World Cup in South Africa. Stranger Shores opens with 'What is a classic?' in which Coetzee explores the answer to his own question "What does it mean in living terms to say that the classic is what survives?' - by way of T. S. Eliot, Johann Sebastian Bach and Zbigniew Herbert. His subjects range from the great eighteenth and nineteenth-century writers Daniel Defoe, Samuel Richardson and Ivan Turgenev, to the great German modernists Rilke, Kafka and Musil, to the giants of late twentieth-century literature, among them Harry Mulisch, Joseph Brodsky, Jorge Luis Borges, Salman Rushdie, Amos Oz, Naguib Mahfouz, Nadine Gordimer and Doris Lessing.
  • ADCHO
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    As recent reports suggest, many fewer weddings are now taking place in church. For those that are not having the traditional wedding service, it can be a problem finding suitable material to be read at a civil ceremony. And even some traditionalists like to have something extra read at their wedding lunch or party. This inspiring book offers 70 poems and readings which celebrate love and union - and offer the prospect of a lifetime's shared happiness.