×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

Making the Archives Talk: New and Selected Essays in Bibliography, Editing, and Book History
     

Making the Archives Talk: New and Selected Essays in Bibliography, Editing, and Book History

by James L. W. West III
 

See All Formats & Editions

Making the Archives Talk is a collection of twelve essays by editor, biographer, bibliographer, and book historian James L. W. West III. In these essays, West sets forth his views of editorial theory, archival use, textual emendation, and scholarly annotation. He has published editions of major writings by Theodore Dreiser, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and William

Overview

Making the Archives Talk is a collection of twelve essays by editor, biographer, bibliographer, and book historian James L. W. West III. In these essays, West sets forth his views of editorial theory, archival use, textual emendation, and scholarly annotation. He has published editions of major writings by Theodore Dreiser, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and William Styron. Drawing on these editions for examples, West defends intentionalist editing and the eclectic emendation of texts. He discusses the treatment of both public documents (novels, stories, and nonfiction) and private texts (letters, diaries, journals, and working papers). Highlights of the collection include “The Scholarly Editor as Biographer,” “Editorial Theory and the Act of Submission,” “Double Quotes and Double Meanings in Jennie Gerhardt,” “Annotating Mr. Fitzgerald,” and “The End Is Near.” Two of the essays, “Toxic Words and the Editor” and “Keeper of the Flame: Editing the Literary Remains of William Styron,” are previously unpublished.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Jim West’s stories about, and his reflections on, his many years editing the works of such major literary writers as Fitzgerald and Styron are told in a humane, reflective, and pragmatic spirit. West brings intriguing evidence to bear. He shows how the Realpolitik of the book trade, the technical concerns of bibliography, and the crises of cultural politics crisscross the editorial arena, complicating the whole endeavor. This engaging book is a narrative capstone to a distinguished career in scholarly editing and book history.”

—Paul Eggert, University of New South Wales at ADFA, Australian Research Council

“For many years Jim West has shown that editing literary works is an intensely critical and humane activity that engages the full range of an editor’s learning and abilities. The ten previously published essays selected for this volume have been significantly revised so that this book is the single most authoritative reference for these works. . . . Even those who have participated in his luminous career will be eager to read the two new essays. He is one of very few biblio-textual writers whose works are ‘a good read.’”

—T. H. Howard-Hill, University of South Carolina, editor of the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America

“James West is one of our most accomplished editors and critics. This welcome new collection of essays on modernist prose writers shows him at his best, weaving expertly between general principles and particular texts by Dreiser, Fitzgerald, Styron, and others. A leading intentionalist scholar, West brings a lifetime’s knowledge to bear on important works and on the process of constructing them.”

—George Bornstein, University of Michigan

“James West adopts and defends a biographer’s approach to textual studies and scholarly editing. For the biographer, there is no source of information, no point of view about the evidence, and no conflicting opinion that is rejected or neglected. The central theme of this book is that textual editing involves constructing narrative explanations for the surviving evidence, giving us purchase on the interpretive consequences of textual variation. As West says, ‘This is fun. It’s what textual editors do.’”

—Peter L. Shillingsburg, Loyola University

“This collection of essays is enthralling to read for many reasons: the author’s unique perspective on book history, his insight into the field of scholarly editing, and, especially, a scholar’s detailed use of archival collections.”

—Cheryl Oestreicher, Archival Issues

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780271050676
Publisher:
Penn State University Press
Publication date:
12/15/2011
Series:
Penn State Series in the History of the Book , #16
Pages:
160
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.60(d)

Meet the Author

James L. W. West III is Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of English at The Pennsylvania State University and general editor of Penn State Studies in the History of the Book. He has published some twenty scholarly editions—among them editions of Theodore Dreiser’s Sister Carrie and Jennie Gerhardt; F. Scott Fitzgerald’s This Side of Paradise and Trimalchio; and William Styron’s Inheritance of Night and Letters to My Father. West’s books include American Authors and the Literary Marketplace Since 1900 (1988), William Styron: A Life (1998), and The Perfect Hour: The Romance of F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ginevra King (2005). He has been awarded fellowships and grants from the J. S. Guggenheim Foundation, the National Humanities Center, the American Philosophical Society, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the American Academy in Rome. West has held Fulbright appointments in England at Cambridge University and in Belgium at the Université de Liège.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews