Writing the American Classics

Overview

This collection of essays describes the genesis of ten classic works of American literature. Using biographical, cultural, and manuscript evidence, the contributors tell the "stories of stories," plotting the often curious and always interesting ways in which notable American books took shape in a writer's mind.

The genetic approach taken in these essays derives from a curiosity, and sometimes a feeling of awe, about how a work of literature came to exist -- what motivated its ...

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University of North Carolina Press, 1990. Hardcover. Brand new. ISBN: 0807818968.

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Overview

This collection of essays describes the genesis of ten classic works of American literature. Using biographical, cultural, and manuscript evidence, the contributors tell the "stories of stories," plotting the often curious and always interesting ways in which notable American books took shape in a writer's mind.

The genetic approach taken in these essays derives from a curiosity, and sometimes a feeling of awe, about how a work of literature came to exist -- what motivated its creation, informed its vision, urged its completion. It is just that sort of wonder that first brings some people to love writers and their books.

Originally published in 1990.

A UNC Press Enduring Edition -- UNC Press Enduring Editions use the latest in digital technology to make available again books from our distinguished backlist that were previously out of print. These editions are published unaltered from the original, and are presented in affordable paperback formats, bringing readers both historical and cultural value.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A terrific collection of essays that I shall recommend to colleagues and students, especially of the American novel. It modestly puts to rest the fantasy that only post-structuralist theory has anything important and engaging to say about literature. Writing the American Classics is more than a renewal of genetic criticism; it is the barometer of a new critical climate."—Norman S. Grabo, University of Tulsa The first modern edition of the writings of this legendary figure. 'Insure[s] that Smith will remain familiar to American schoolchildren and, what is more important, that an accurate version of his writings will be accessible to scholars and the general public."—New York Times Book Review
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807818961
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/1990
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Lexile: 1420L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.34 (w) x 9.32 (h) x 0.95 (d)

Meet the Author

James Barbour is a professor of English at the University of New Mexico.

Tom Quirk is a professor of English at the University of Missouri, Columbia.

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