Henry James: Travel Writings 1: Great Britain and America

Overview

This volume brings together James's writings on Great Britain and America. The essays of "English Hours" convey the freshness of James's 'wonderments and judgments and emotions' on first encountering the country that became his adopted home for half a century. He captures the varied life of London in a series of walks through that 'murky, modern Babylon,' which contains 'the most romantic town-vistas in the world.'...James includes vivid accounts of a New Year's weekend at a perfectly appointed country house, ...
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Overview

This volume brings together James's writings on Great Britain and America. The essays of "English Hours" convey the freshness of James's 'wonderments and judgments and emotions' on first encountering the country that became his adopted home for half a century. He captures the varied life of London in a series of walks through that 'murky, modern Babylon,' which contains 'the most romantic town-vistas in the world.'...James includes vivid accounts of a New Year's weekend at a perfectly appointed country house, midsummer dog days in London, and the spectacle of the Derby at Epsom. In every essay he enriches his portrait of the English character, governed by social conventions and yet prone to startling eccentricities. Joseph Pennell's delightful illustrations, which appeared in the original 1905 edition, are reprinted with James's text. In "The American Scene" (1907) James revisits his native country after a twenty-year absence, traveling throughout the eastern United States from Boston to Florida. Views of the Hudson River arouse memories of his own past—the river 'seemed to stretch back...to the earliest outlook of my consciousness,' he writes. James's poignant rediscovery of what remained of the New York of his childhood ('the precious stretch of space between Washington Square and Fourteenth Street') contrasts with his impression of the modern, commercial New York, a new city representing 'a particular type of dauntless power,..crowned not only with no history, but with no credible possibility of time for history?' Sixteen essays on traveling in Englan
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In addition to many literary classics, James composed a large canon of travel writings, much of which was written as a correspondent for The Nation . In the latest addition to its ongoing series, the Library of America here collects many of James's best travel pieces, such as ``English Hours,'' ``The American Scene,'' Italian Hours,'' and ``A Little Tour of France.'' Also included are approximately 175 illustrations and scholarly notes compiled by editor Howard, poet, critic, and professor of English at the University of Houston, along with the chronology of the author's life that is standard to all volumes in the series. Given James's high position in American and English letters, this is recommended for both travel and literature collections.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780940450769
  • Publisher: Library of America
  • Publication date: 1/28/2011
  • Series: Library of America Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 868
  • Sales rank: 1,235,078
  • Product dimensions: 8.06 (w) x 5.26 (h) x 1.09 (d)

Meet the Author

Henry James (1843-1916), born in New York City, was the son of noted religious philosopher Henry James, Sr., and brother of eminent psychologist and philosopher William James. He spent his early life in America and studied in Geneva, London and Paris during his adolescence to gain the worldly experience so prized by his father. He lived in Newport, went briefly to Harvard Law School, and in 1864 began to contribute both criticism and tales to magazines.

In 1869, and then in 1872-74, he paid visits to Europe and began his first novel, Roderick Hudson. Late in 1875 he settled in Paris, where he met Turgenev, Flaubert, and Zola, and wrote The American (1877). In December 1876 he moved to London, where two years later he achieved international fame with Daisy Miller. Other famous works include Washington Square (1880), The Portrait of a Lady (1881), The Princess Casamassima (1886), The Aspern Papers (1888), The Turn of the Screw (1898), and three large novels of the new century, The Wings of the Dove (1902), The Ambassadors (1903) and The Golden Bowl (1904). In 1905 he revisited the United States and wrote The American Scene (1907).

During his career he also wrote many works of criticism and travel. Although old and ailing, he threw himself into war work in 1914, and in 1915, a few months before his death, he became a British subject. In 1916 King George V conferred the Order of Merit on him. He died in London in February 1916.

Biography

Henry James (1843-1916), born in New York City, was the son of noted religious philosopher Henry James, Sr., and brother of eminent psychologist and philosopher William James. He spent his early life in America and studied in Geneva, London and Paris during his adolescence to gain the worldly experience so prized by his father. He lived in Newport, went briefly to Harvard Law School, and in 1864 began to contribute both criticism and tales to magazines. In 1869, and then in 1872-74, he paid visits to Europe and began his first novel, Roderick Hudson. Late in 1875 he settled in Paris, where he met Turgenev, Flaubert, and Zola, and wrote The American (1877). In December 1876 he moved to London, where two years later he achieved international fame with Daisy Miller. Other famous works include Washington Square (1880), The Portrait of a Lady (1881), The Princess Casamassima (1886), The Aspern Papers (1888), The Turn of the Screw (1898), and three large novels of the new century, The Wings of the Dove (1902), The Ambassadors (1903) and The Golden Bowl (1904). In 1905 he revisited the United States and wrote The American Scene (1907). During his career, he also wrote many works of criticism and travel. Although old and ailing, he threw himself into war work in 1914, and in 1915, a few months before his death, he became a British subject. In 1916 King George V conferred the Order of Merit on him. He died in London in February 1916.

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Group (USA).

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    1. Date of Birth:
      April 15, 1843
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, New York
    1. Date of Death:
      February 28, 1916
    2. Place of Death:
      London, England
    1. Education:
      Attended school in France and Switzerland; Harvard Law School, 1862-63

Table of Contents

English Hours 1
Great Britain: Uncollected Travel Writings 265
The American Scene 351
America: Early Travel Writings 737
Chronology 793
Note on the Texts 808
Notes 812
Index 835
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