Germania: In Wayward Pursuit of the Germans and Their History [EPUB]
05 February 2015, 16:05
2010 | EPUB | 2.27MB
A UNIQUE EXPLORATION OF GERMAN CULTURE, FROM SAUSAGE ADVERTISEMENTS TO WAGNER
Sitting on a bench at a communal table in a restaurant in Regensburg, his plate loaded with disturbing amounts of bratwurst and sauerkraut made golden by candlelight shining through a massive glass of beer, Simon Winder was happily swinging his legs when a couple from Rottweil politely but awkwardly asked: “So: why are you here?”
This book is an attempt to answer that question. Why spend time wandering around a country that remains a sort of dead zone for many foreigners, surrounded as it is by a force field of historical, linguistic, climatic, and gastronomic barriers? Winder’s book is propelled by a wish to reclaim the brilliant, chaotic, endlessly varied German civilization that the Nazis buried and ruined, and that, since 1945, so many Germans have worked to rebuild.
Germania is a very funny book on serious topics—how we are misled by history, how we twist history, and how sometimes it is best to know no history at all. It is a book full of curiosities: odd food, castles, mad princes, fairy tales, and horse-mating videos. It is about the limits of language, the meaning of culture, and the pleasure of townscape.
The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages [EPUB]
05 February 2015, 01:15
1994 | EPUB | 1.15MB
Harold Bloom explores our Western literary tradition by concentrating on the works of twenty-six authors central to the Canon. He argues against ideology in literary criticism; he laments the loss of intellectual and aesthetic standards; he deplores multiculturalism, Marxism, feminism, neoconservatism, Afrocentrism, and the New Historicism. Insisting instead upon "the autonomy of the aesthetic, " Bloom places Shakespeare at the center of the Western Canon. Shakespeare has become the touchstone for all writers who come before and after him, whether playwrights poets or storytellers. In the creation of character, Bloom maintains, Shakespeare has no true precursor and has left no one after him untouched.
Milton, Samuel Johnson, Goethe, Ibsen, Joyce, and Beckett were all indebted to him; Tolstoy and Freud rebelled against him; and Dante, Wordsworth, Austen, Dickens, Whitman, Dickinson, Proust, the modern Hispanic and Portuguese writers Borges, Neruda, and Pessoa are exquisite examples of how canonical writing is born of an originality fused with tradition. Bloom concludes this provocative, trenchant work with a complete list of essential writers and books - his vision of the Canon.
Collecting Himself [EPUB]
04 February 2015, 07:45
2011 | EPUB | 4.91MB
James Thurber spent most of his career at the New Yorker magazine, drawing cartoons and writing essays and stories. Collecting Himself is a one-of-a-kind compilation of James Thurber's vintage writings, featuring previously unanthologized articles, essays, interviews, reviews, cartoons, parodies, as well as Thurber's reflections on his work in theater and at the New Yorker. An eclectic body of work that offers a glimpse into Thurber the man, the philosopher, and the critic.