Editors of Shakespeare's Complete Works must decide what to include. Although not in the First Folio collection of 1623, The Two Noble Kinsmen and Edward III have now entered the canon as plays co-authored by Shakespeare. Determining the Shakespeare Canon makes the case for lifting Arden of Faversham, first published in 1592, over the same threshold. A wealth of evidence indicates that Shakespeare was wholly or largely responsible for several of its central scenes (constituting Act III in editions divided into acts), and that the domestic tragedy can thus be added to the mounting list of his dramatic collaborations. Shakespeare's beginnings as a playwright are due for reconsideration.
Fascinated by them, unable to ignore them, and imaginatively stimulated by them, Charles Dickens was an acute and unsentimental reporter on the dogs he kept and encountered during a time when they were a burgeoning part of the nineteenth-century urban and domestic scene. As dogs inhabited Dickens's city, so too did they populate his fiction, journalism, and letters. In the first book-length work of criticism on Dickens's relationship to canines, Beryl Gray shows that dogs, real and invented, were intrinsic to Dickens's vision and experience of London and to his representations of its life.
On the fiftieth anniversary of the death of T. S. Eliot, the award-winning biographer Robert Crawford presents us with the first volume of a comprehensive account of this poetic genius. Young Eliot traces the life of the twentieth century's most important poet from his childhood in St. Louis to the publication of his revolutionary poem The Waste Land.
Treacherous Faith offers a new and ambitious cross-disciplinary account of the ways writers from the early English Reformation to the Restoration generated, sustained, or questioned cultural anxieties about heresy and heretics. This book examines the dark, often brutal story of defining, constructing, and punishing heretics in early modern England, and especially the ways writers themselves contributed to or interrogated the politics of religious fear-mongering and demonizing.
Fantasy is a creation of the Enlightenment and the recognition that excitement and wonder can be found in imagining impossible things. From the ghost stories of the Gothic to the zombies and vampires of twenty-first-century popular literature, from Mrs Radcliffe to Ms Rowling, the fantastic has been popular with readers. Since Tolkien and his many imitators, however, it has become a major publishing phenomenon.
In Oscar Wilde’s Chatterton, Joseph Bristow and Rebecca N. Mitchell explore Wilde’s fascination with the eighteenth-century forger Thomas Chatterton, who tragically took his life at the age of seventeen. This innovative study combines a scholarly monograph with a textual edition of the extensive notes that Wilde took on the brilliant forger who inspired not only Coleridge, Wordsworth, and Keats but also Victorian artists and authors. Bristow and Mitchell argue that Wilde’s substantial “Chatterton” notebook, which previous scholars have deemed a work of plagiarism, is central to his development as a gifted writer of criticism, drama, fiction, and poetry.
Ever since Karl Jasper's "axial age" paradigm, there have been a number of influential studies comparing ancient East Asian and Greco-Roman history and culture. Most of these have centered on the emergence of the world's philosophical and religious traditions, or on models of empire building. However, to date there has been no comparative study involving literatures of multiple traditions in the ancient East Asian and Mediterranean cultural spheres. At first glance, it would appear that the literary cultures of early Japan and Rome share little in common with each other. Yet both were intimately connected with the literature of antecedent "reference cultures," China and Greece respectively.