On Books and Writers: Selected Essays

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"This stellar collection is quintessential Bruccoli. His diverse interests, renowned scholarship, and famously brusque wit shine from every page."---John Jakes" "This essay collection---the first to draw from Matthew Bruccoli's wide range of essays on American letters, bibliography, and publishing---shows the many facets of his deep learning. In John C. Unrue's choices and in his introduction, the process of recognizing Bruccoli's contributions to American literary study is well begun." Linda Wagner-Martin" "Congratulations to John Unrue for

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Overview

"This stellar collection is quintessential Bruccoli. His diverse interests, renowned scholarship, and famously brusque wit shine from every page."---John Jakes" "This essay collection---the first to draw from Matthew Bruccoli's wide range of essays on American letters, bibliography, and publishing---shows the many facets of his deep learning. In John C. Unrue's choices and in his introduction, the process of recognizing Bruccoli's contributions to American literary study is well begun." Linda Wagner-Martin" "Congratulations to John Unrue for bringing together essays on various topics by one of the most distinguished literary scholars of his generation. Matthew J. Bruccoli's comments on books, publishing, libraries, and, especially, F. Scott Fitzgerald represent a catholicity of knowledge and experience that few now possess, and others have rarely matched."---Joel Myerson" "AS a Writer, Scholar, Critic, Teacher, bibliophile, and publisher, Matthew J. Bruccoli had immeasurable impact on American literary scholarship and history over the past half century. In his more than one hundred published books, Bruccoli demonstrated a rare model of scholarship based on tenacious research, passionate intensity, and encyclopedic knowledge of his subjects. He brought this same spirited mode of inquiry to his essays as well. On Books and Writers brings together thirty of Bruccoli's best short pieces from journals, anthologies, and other publications to illustrate in a single volume the remarkable range and enduring contributions of this accomplished man of letters." "The collection begins with six essays on F. Scott Fitzgerald-an ideal starting point considering Bruccoli's status as the author's foremost scholar, collector, and advocate. From there the volume proceeds through thoughtfully organized sections on Bruccoli's other great interests: bibliography, publishing and publishers, bookmen, libraries and librarians, and a host of writers including Thomas Wolfe, Ernest Hemingway, John O'Hara, and Raymond Chandler. Each piece resonates with the unmistakable voice and lucid insights of its author. The book concludes with a comprehensive bibliography of Bruccoli's publications." Edited by John C. Unrue, Bruccoli's friend for some forty years, this collection takes readers inside the realms of authorship, scholarship, book collecting, and publishing in which Bruccoli held such great sway. In short this is an insider's guide to the multifaceted profession of literature, written with the commanding wisdom, companionable wit, and cordial prose of a master scholar and teacher.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Unrue, a former student of Bruccoli's, shares a compilation of his late professor's literary criticisms and observations in the first published collection of the late author's work. Bruccoli, who authored or edited over 100 books, is still somewhat unknown in the literary world. Noted primarily for his scholarship of F. Scott Fitzgerald, Bruccoli wrote extensively about the steps and missteps in the conception of each of the author's novels, and immersed himself in the study of Fitzgerald's personal life, uncovering a link between the plots and release dates of his books and Zelda Fitzgerald's turbulent mental state. Also included are essays and personal observations concerning publishing, libraries and librarians, bibliography, and other prominent writers of the 20th century (including Wharton, Hemingway, and Chandler), offering details that will be most helpful to bibliographers and scholars. Unrue's collection is a loving look at the life and work of a man who embraced every element of literature, and his admiration for his subject shines through, illuminating the many accomplishments of an unknown icon.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570039027
  • Publisher: University of South Carolina Press
  • Publication date: 5/30/2010
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author


Matthew J. Bruccoli (1931-2008) was the Emily Brown Jefferies Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English at the University of South Carolina and the leading authority on the House of Scribner and its authors. He was the editorial director of the Dictionary of Literary Biography and the author or editor of more than one hundred books, including Some Sort of Epic Grandeur: The Life of F. Scott Fitzgerald; The Sons of Maxwell Perkins: Letters of F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Thomas Wolfe, and Their Editor; and Hemingway and the Mechanism of Fame: Statements, Public Letters, Introductions, Forewords, Prefaces, Blurbs, Reviews, and Endorsements.
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Table of Contents

Preface

Acknowledgments

Introduction

Part 1. On Fitzgerald

The Man of Letters as Professional 3

This Side of Paradise: Fitzgerald's Apprentice Novel 15

The Beautiful and Damned: A Warning Prophecy 22

The Great Gatsby: Fitzgerald's Triumph of Genius and Craft 27

Tender Is the Night: From Concept to "The Author's Final Version" 39

The Love of the Last Tycoon: Preparation and Composition 63

Part 2. On Bibliography

What Bowers Wrought: An Assessment of the Center for Editions of American Authors 83

Textual Variants in Sinclair Lewis's Babbitt 91

Hidden Printings in Edith Wharton's The Children 97

A Mirror for Bibliographers: Duplicate Plates in Modern Printing 101

Concealed Printings in Hawthorne 106

Notes on the Destruction of The Scarlet Letter Manuscript 112

Part 3. On Publishing and Publishers

Getting It Right: The Publishing Process and the Correction of Factual Errors---with Reference to The Great Gatsby 117

The Profession of Authorship in Twenty-First-Century America 132

What Maxwell Perkins Really Did for Look Homeward, Angel 145

Part 4. On Bookmen

Debts 157

Hawthorne as a Collector's Item, 1885-1924 167

George D. Smith and the Anglo-American Book Migration 178

Bookman: Charles Elliot Frazer Clark, Jr., 1925-2001 189

Part 5. On Libraries and Librarians

Mere Collectors' Items 199

Where They Belong: The Acquisition of the F. Scott Fitzgerald Papers 205

John Cook Wyllie 212

Research Libraries without Reference Books 225

Part 6. On Other Writers

"The Light of the World": Stan Ketchel as "My Sweet Christ" 231

Thomas Wolfe's "The Four Lost Men" 236

Out of Life: John O'Haras Character Creation 247

Focus on Appointment in Samarra: The Importance of Knowing What You Are Talking About 256

A Reopening of the By Love Possessed Case 263

Raymond Chandler and Hollywood 269

Hemingway's Pursuit of Fame 277

Publications Matthew J. Bruccoli Bruccoli, Matthew J. 287

Index 313

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