The Acts of the Compassionates: “The pleasures of this novel come from the absurd situations, the baroque language and the passing shots at everything from gay marriage to wardrobe malfunctions. How the author manages to hit so many topics, on so many cylinders, in a scant 164 pages, makes this news editor weep with fraternal pride.” -- Allen Voivod in Deadbrain.com.
George Bush is thought to be on a “mission to Mars,” in search of dragons. Compelled by visions and prophecies, Richard the Unabashed (Cheney) and Don Carlos Borracha (Rumsfeld) then convince the rest of the Compassionates and the Kikbutzin (American) people to conquer the evil Kizhands (Iraqis) and their despicable King Subman (Saddam Hussein).
With brilliantly vivid irony, a mosaic of voices tells the true story of Switzerland's most notorious bank robbers: Kurt Sandweg and Waldemar Velte. As 1933 draws to a close, the pair arrive in Basel from Wuppertal, Germany. Rebels on the run, they are searching for an escape from the confines of a callously regimented society left impoverished by the Depression and the onset of Nazi power. However, their desperation leads them to a realm outside reality, on a destructive path of vengeance for the world's abhorrent lack of justice. Resolute on their doomed mission, neither expected to fall in love. Seen through the benign eyes of Dorly Schupp, the agonising humanity of their relationships are sharply juxtaposed against the reckless cruelty of their crimes. Yet in a world equally heartless and unremitting, who should shoulder the blame? Capus relates the portrait of these chillingly charismatic figures in a curious blend of documentary and narrative where precision of detail collides with an economy of emotion, and leaves the desolation of their situation stark and blindingly poignant. Suspended between the tragic and comic, Capus's novel mimics the absurd idiosyncrasies of life where often nothing but interpretation is left to determine the sacred from the profane.
A classic tale of heroism and revolution by celebrated Kentucky writer Gurney Norman.
First published in 1975 as a spoken-word record, Gurney Norman’s classic folktale tells the story of resistance among “the folks” in a mythical “hill domain” ruled by an absurd but evil king. Told in mock-heroic language, the story employs satire, comic irony, regional speech, and “the voice of a storyteller,” as a fugitive hero, Jack, leads the people in revolt against an oppressive monarchy.
Featuring cover art by eastern Kentucky artist Pam Oldfield Meade, this new edition of Ancient Creek includes four essays about the story by scholar Annalucia Accardo, writer Dee Davis, professor Kevin I. Eyster, and the late poet and scholar Jim Wayne Miller.
Through the twentieth century, from colonial Ireland to the United States, and from Franco's Spain to late Soviet Russia, to include sexuality in a novel signaled social progressiveness and artistic innovation, but also transgression. Certain novelists—such as James Joyce, Vladimir Nabokov, Luis Martín-Santos, and Viktor Erofeev—radicalized the content of the novel by incorporating sexual thoughts, situations, and fantasies and thus portraying repressed areas of social, cultural, political, and mental life.
In The Artistic Censoring of Sexuality: Fantasy and Judgment in the Twentieth-Century Novel, Susan Mooney extensively examines four modernist and postmodernist novels that prompted in their day harsh external censorship because of their sexual content—Ulysses, Lolita, Time of Silence, and Russian Beauty. She shows how motifs of censorship, with all its restrictions, pressures, rules, judgments, and forms of negation, became artistically embedded in the novels' plots, characters, settings, tropes, and themes. These novels contest censorship's status quo and critically explore its processes and power. This study reveals the impact of censorship on literary creation, particularly in relation to the twentieth century's growing interest in sexuality and its discourses.
Helen of Troy and Aphrodite: two classical paragons of beauty and love. These two figures have served as the inspiration for innumerable works of art in the Western cannon. In the twenty-first century, however, what do their stories provide but a reminder of the predictable roles which sexism has assigned women throughout history and literature?
In this fresh new take on the two women’s stories, Jennifer Pullen takes us away from the familiar and deeper into their experiences. Rewriting Homer, Pullen revitalizes these two figures for the contemporary era. In A Bead of Amber on Her Tongue, Aphrodite maintains autonomy through her experience of her own body, even when forced into marriage. Helen of Troy, meanwhile, harbors a love for her maid, Esme, that no conquering hero can vanquish. Revisiting these classic stories with an inventive twist, Pullen shows that, with a little imagination, the classics may yet bear new insights.
In this original and provocative study of contemporary African film and literature, Vlad Dima investigates the way that football and cinema express individual and collective fantasies, and highlights where football and cinema converge and diverge with regard to neocolonial fantasies. Shedding new light on both well-known and less familiar films by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, Abderrahmane Sissako, Jean-Pierre Bekolo, Moussa Touré, Safi Faye, Cheick Doukouré, and Joseph Gaï Ramaka, among others, the study asks just whose fantasy is articulated in football and African cinema. Answering this question requires the exploration of body and identity issues, here through the metaphor of skin: fantasy as a skin; the football jersey as a skin; and ultimately film itself as a skin that has visual, aural, and haptic qualities. The neocolonial body is often depicted as suffering and in the process of being flattened or emptied. So frequently do African cinema and literature replicate this hollowed body, all skin as it were, that it becomes the very type of body that defines neocolonialism. Could the body of film—the depth of both characters and story within the cinematic skin—hold the key to moving into a post-neocolonial era, an era defined by “full” bodies and personal affirmation? This is the question Dima seeks to answer.
The myths of the Gimi, a people of the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, attribute the origin of death and misery to the incestuous desires of the first woman or man, as if one sex or the other were guilty of the very first misdeed. Working for years among the Gimi, speaking their language, anthropologist Gillian Gillison gained rare insight into these myths and their pervasive influence in the organization of social life. Hers is a fascinating account of relations between the sexes and the role of myth in the transition between unconscious fantasy and cultural forms.
Gillison shows how the themes expressed in Gimi myths—especially sexual hostility and an obsession with menstrual blood—are dramatized in the elaborate public rituals that accompany marriage, death, and other life crises. The separate myths of Gimi women and men seem to speak to one another, to protest, alter, and enlarge upon myths of the other sex. The sexes cast blame in the veiled imagery of myth and then play out their debate in joint rituals, cooperating in shows of conflict and resolution that leave men undefeated and accord women the greater blame for misfortune.
In a book that completely changes the terms of the pornography debate, Laura Kipnis challenges the position that porn perpetuates misogyny and sex crimes. First published in 1996, Bound and Gagged opens with the chilling case of Daniel DePew, a man convicted—in the first computer bulletin board entrapment case—of conspiring to make a snuff film and sentenced to thirty-three years in prison for merely trading kinky fantasies with two undercover cops. Using this textbook example of social hysteria as a springboard, Kipnis argues that criminalizing fantasy—even perverse and unacceptable fantasy—has dire social consequences. Exploring the entire spectrum of pornography, she declares that porn isn’t just about gender and that fantasy doesn’t necessarily constitute intent. She reveals Larry Flynt’s Hustler to be one of the most politically outspoken and class-antagonistic magazine in the country and shows how fetishes such as fat admiration challenge our aesthetic prejudices and socially sanctioned disgust. Kipnis demonstrates that the porn industry—whose multibillion-dollar annual revenues rival those of the three major television networks combined—know precisely how to tap into our culture’s deepest anxieties and desires, and that this knowledge, more than all the naked bodies, is what guarantees its vast popularity. Bound and Gagged challenges our most basic assumptions about America’s relationship with pornography and questions what the calls to eliminate it are really attempting to protect.
In a rich and engaging book that illuminates the lives and attitudes of peasants in preindustrial Europe, Piero Camporesi makes the unexpected and fascinating claim that these people lived in a state of almost permanent hallucination, drugged by their very hunger or by bread adulterated with hallucinogenic herbs. The use of opiate products, administered even to infants and children, was widespread and was linked to a popular mythology in which herbalists and exorcists were important cultural figures. Through a careful reconstruction of the everyday lives of peasants, beggars, and the poor, Camporesi presents a vivid and disconcerting image of early modern Europe as a vast laboratory of dreams.
"Camporesi is as much a poet as a historian. . . . His appeal is to the senses as well as to the mind. . . . Fascinating in its details and compelling in its overall message."—Vivian Nutton, Times Literary Supplement
"It is not often that an academic monograph in history is also a book to fascinate the discriminating general reader. Bread of Dreams is just that."—Kenneth McNaught, Toronto Star
"Not religion but bread was the opiate of the poor, Mr. Camporesi argues. . . . Food has always been a social and mythological construct that conditions what we vainly imagine to be matters of personal taste. Our hunger for such works should tell us that food is not only good but essential to think and to read as if our lives depended on it, which they do."—Betty Fussell, New York Times Book Review
Thirteen original essays written specifically for the second Eaton Conference on Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature, held February 23–24, 1980, at the University of California, Riverside.
These essays demonstrate the variety of fantasy forms and their pervasiveness throughout the ages and will stimulate further study of this complex and elusive mode. The essays—by Harold Bloom, writer and DeVane Professor of the Humanities at Yale University; Larry McCaffery, Assistant Professor of English at San Diego State University; Marta E. Sánchez, Instructor of English at the University of California, San Diego; Arlen J. Hansen, Professor of English at the University of the Pacific, Stockton; David Clayton, Instructor of Comparative Literatureat the University of California, San Diego; Robert Sale, writer and Professor of English at the University of Washington; G. Richard Thompson, Professor of English at Purdue University, West Lafayette; Robert A. Collins, Coordinator of the annual Swann Conference on the Fantastic and Instructor at Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton; John Gerlach, Associate Professor of English at Cleveland State University; David Ketterer, writer and Professor of English at Concordia University, Montreal; George R. Guffey, Professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles; Jack P. Rawlins, Associate Professor of English at California State University, Chico; and Gary Kern, writer and translator of early Soviet literature—examine fantasy on many levels of interest: as an element of human thought, as a constant factor in the social and intellectual environment, and as a generator of form in art and literature.
On Thursday nights, the players assemble in the back of Readmore Comix and Games. Celeste is the dungeon master; Valerie, who works at the store, was roped in by default; Mooneyham, the banker, likes to argue; and Ben, sensitive, unemployed, and living at home, is still recovering from an unrequited love. In the real world they go about their days falling in love, coming out at work, and dealing with their family lives all with varying degrees of success. But in the world of their fantasy game, they are heroes and wizards fighting to stop an evil cult from waking a sleeping god.
But then a sexy new guy, Albert, joins the club, Ben’s character is killed, and Mooneyham’s boyfriend is accosted on the street. The connections and parallels between the real world and the fantasy one become stronger and more important than ever as Ben struggles to bring his character back to life and win Albert’s affection, and the group unites to organize a protest at a neighborhood bar. All the while the slighted and competing vampire role playing club, working secretly in the shadows, begins to make its move.
These thirteen original essays were written specifically for the Third J. Lloyd Eaton Conference on Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature, held February 21–22, 1981, at the University of California, Riverside.
Leslie Fiedler sets the tone of this volume by fixing a basic set of coordinates—that of “elitist” and “popular” standards.
Those replying to his charge are: Eric S. Rabkin, Professor of English at the University of Michigan and author of The Fantasticin Literature, “The Descent of Fantasy”; Gerald Prince, Professor of French at the University of Pennsylvania, “How New is New?”; Mark Rose, Professor of English at the University of California at Santa Barbara, author of Alien Encounters, “Jules Verne: Journey to the Center of Science Fiction”; Joseph Lenz, who teaches English Literature at the University of Michigan, “Manifest Destiny: Science Fiction Epic and Classical Forms”; Michelle Massé, of the English Department at the George Mason University, “‘All you have to do is know what you want’: Individual Expectations in Triton”;Gary K. Wolfe, who teaches English at Roosevelt University, author of The Known and the Unknown, “Autoplastic and Alloplastic Adaptations in Science Fiction: ‘Waldo’ and ‘Desertion’”; Robert Hunt, an editor with Glencoe Press, “Science Fiction for the Age of Inflation: Reading Atlas Shrugged in the 1980s”; George R. Guffey, Professor of English at UCLA, “Fahrenheit451and the ‘Cubby-Hole Editors’ of Ballantine Books”; H. Bruce Franklin, Professor of English and American Literature at Rutgers University at Newark, “America as Science Fiction: 1939”; Sandra M. Gilbert, Professor of English at the University of California at Davis, and coauthor with Susan Gubar of Madwoman in the Attic, “Rider Haggard’s Heart of Darkness”; the aforementioned Susan Gubar, Professor of English at Indiana University, “She in Her/and: Feminism as Fantasy”; and George R. Slusser, Curator of the Eaton Collection, “Death and the Mirror: Existential Fantasy.”
Dance of the Returned
Devon A. Mihesuah University of Arizona Press, 2022 Library of Congress PS3563.I371535D36 2022 | Dewey Decimal 813.6
The disappearance of a young Choctaw leads Detective Monique Blue Hawk to investigate a little-known ceremonial dance. As she traces the steps of the missing man, she discovers that the seemingly innocuous Renewal Dance is not what it appears to be. After Monique embarks on a journey that she never thought possible, she learns that the past and future can converge to offer endless possibilities for the present. She must also accept her own destiny of violence and peacekeeping.
The curious paradox of romance is that, throughout its history, this genre has been dismissed as trivial and unintellectual, yet people have never ceased to flock to it with enthusiasm and even fervor. In contemporary contexts, we devour popular romance and fantasy novels like The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and Game of Thrones, reference them in conversations, and create online communities to expound, passionately and intelligently, upon their characters and worlds. But romance is “unrealistic,” critics say, doing readers a disservice by not accurately representing human experiences. It is considered by some to be a distraction from real literature, a distraction from real life, and little more.
Yet is it possible that romance is expressing a truth—and a truth unrecognized by realist genres? The Arthurian literature of the Middle Ages, Karen Sullivan argues, consistently ventriloquizes in its pages the criticisms that were being made of romance at the time, and implicitly defends itself against those criticisms. The Danger of Romance shows that the conviction that ordinary reality is the only reality is itself an assumption, and one that can blind those who hold it to the extraordinary phenomena that exist around them. It demonstrates that that which is rare, ephemeral, and inexplicable is no less real than that which is commonplace, long-lasting, and easily accounted for. If romance continues to appeal to audiences today, whether in its Arthurian prototype or in its more recent incarnations, it is because it confirms the perception—or even the hope—of a beauty and truth in the world that realist genres deny.
The elegists, ancient Rome’s most introspective poets, filled their works with vivid, first-person accounts of dreams. Dream, Fantasy, and Visual Art in Roman Elegy examines these varied and visually striking textual dreamscapes, arguing that the poets exploited dynamics of visual representation to allow readers to share in the intensely personal experience of dreaming.
By treating dreams as a mode for viewing, an analogy suggested by diverse ancient authors, Emma Scioli extracts new information from the poetry of Propertius, Tibullus, and Ovid about the Roman concept of “seeing” dreams. Through comparison with other visual modes of description, such as ekphrasis and simile, as well as with related types of visual experience, such as fantasy and voyeurism, Scioli demonstrates similarities between artist, dreamer, and poet as creators, identifying the dreamer as a particular type of both viewer and narrator.
Popular Hindi films offer varied cinematic representations ranging from realistic portraits of patriotic heroes to complex fantasies that go beyond escapism. In Dream Machine, Samir Dayal provides a history of Hindi cinema starting with films made after India’s independence in 1947. He constructs a decade-by-decade consideration of Hindi cinema’s role as a site for the construction of “Indianness.”
Dayal suggests that Hindi cinema functions as both mirror and lamp, reflecting and illuminating new and possible representations of national and personal identity, beginning with early postcolonial films including Awaara and Mother India, a classic of the Golden Age. More recent films address critical social issues, such as My Name is Khan and Fire, which concern terrorism and sexuality, respectively. Dayalalso chronicles changes in the industry and in audience reception, and the influence of globalization, considering such films as Slumdog Millionaire.
Dream Machine analyzes the social and aesthetic realism of these films concerning poverty and work, the emergence of the middle class, crime, violence, and the law while arguing for their sustained and critical attention to forms of fantasy.
The amazing origin of our heroine is learnt as Driftwood and her friends grapple with a monster that creates evilly hypnotic video games.
It was during a normally quiet day on Ellesmere Island that Old Bart was interrupted by a pregnant woman floating towards him in an old rowboat. The woman came onto shore, quickly gave birth to a wee girl and died shortly after. The orphaned Driftwood Ellesmere was raised by Old Bart, Clara the Maid and Wilson the Cook in the Toque and Mitt Inn, the most northern hotel in the world.
Not until she is sixteen does Driftwood leave the island for the first time to begin working as a counselor at Camp Magee in British Columbia. Her fun with her new camp friends is interrupted when the last session of kids arrive all entirely addicted to small video game boxes. None will do a single outdoor activity. They growl and try to bite if anyone interrupts their playing of their repetitive consoles. Why is a shy young northern girl the best hope in finding a way to free the children from their electronic chains?
This is how a wondrous story begins that tells both of how Driftwood grew up learning magical things in Arctic isolation and of her first exciting adventure off the island. Traveling with her best friend, Rose, to New York City, the Grand Cayman Islands and beyond Driftwood tackles the problems of the world head on. On her journey she ever learns more about her mysterious past and her truly amazing potential.
The Driftwood Saga continues in an exciting adventure full of ghosts, goddesses, giants, magical creatures, time travel and camp games.
Summoned by the ghost of a slain boy, Driftwood the young magician and her best friend, Rose, journey to Africa to free children from a slave cocoa farm. Another tortured spirit then leads them to China in an attempt to free young factory workers. Meanwhile, Hans Blekansit, Driftwood’s evil father, is turning his employees into giants that roam the country eating forests and mountains to spew out Blekan-Marts, stores which are selling cheap products created by enslaved children. Will Driftwood be able to grapple with the complex problems and monstrous forces that confront her at every turn?
The second tale in the five volume epic, Driftwood’s Crusade is a powerful and fun fantasy written by James Davidge (The Wandering Stars comic book series) and featuring illustrations by Judd Palmer, creator of the Governor General’s Literary Award nominated Preposterous Fables for Unusual Children.
Egyptomania takes us on a historical journey to unearth the Egypt of the imagination, a land of strange gods, mysterious magic, secret knowledge, monumental pyramids, enigmatic sphinxes, and immense wealth. Egypt has always exerted a powerful attraction on the Western mind, and an array of figures have been drawn to the idea of Egypt. Even the practical-minded Napoleon dreamed of Egyptian glory and helped open the antique land to explorers. Ronald H. Fritze goes beyond art and architecture to reveal Egyptomania’s impact on religion, philosophy, historical study, literature, travel, science, and popular culture. All those who remain captivated by the ongoing phenomenon of Egyptomania will revel in the mysteries uncovered in this book.
Juan Martinez University of Arizona Press, 2023 Library of Congress PS3613.A78645 | Dewey Decimal 813.6
In a rundown neighborhood in the heart of Las Vegas, the Alicia hotel awakens and beckons to the most vulnerable—those with something to hide.
After his parents are killed in a horrific roadside execution, Alvaro flees his home in Colombia and finds work as a line cook at the seedy hotel. Together with his sister, Carmen, he begins to make a new life in the desert, earning a promotion to management along with an irresistible offer to stay at the hotel rent-free. But as beloved photographs go missing, cockroaches seep from the walls, and grotesque strangers wander the corridors, the promise of the Alicia decays into nightmare. Alvaro discovers that the hotel is a small appendage of an enormous creature that feeds on guests and their secrets, one that will eventually bring him face-to-face with the memories he most wants to outrun. Alvaro, Carmen, and their friends decide to cooperate with the creature rather than fight it. But in their efforts to appease it, do they sacrifice too much of themselves?
Haunting and visceral, Extended Stay uses the language of body horror and the gothic to comment on the complicated relationship between the Latinx undocumented experience and capitalism, the erasure of those living and working on the margins, the heavy toll exacted by memory, and the queasy permeability of boundaries that separate the waking world from the world of dreams.
In The Fantasy of Feminist History, Joan Wallach Scott argues that feminist perspectives on history are enriched by psychoanalytic concepts, particularly fantasy. Tracing the evolution of her thinking about gender over the course of her career, the pioneering historian explains how her search for ways to more forcefully insist on gender as mutable rather than fixed or stable led her to psychoanalytic theory, which posits sexual difference as an insoluble dilemma. Scott suggests that it is the futile struggle to hold meaning in place that makes gender such an interesting historical object, an object that includes not only regimes of truth about sex and sexuality but also fantasies and transgressions that refuse to be regulated or categorized. Fantasy undermines any notion of psychic immutability or fixed identity, infuses rational motives with desire, and contributes to the actions and events that come to be narrated as history. Questioning the standard parameters of historiography and feminist politics, Scott advocates fantasy as a useful, even necessary, concept for feminist historical analysis.
This abundantly illustrated book is an illuminating exploration of the impact of medieval imagery on three hundred years of visual culture.
From the soaring castles of Sleeping Beauty to the bloody battles of Game of Thrones, from Middle-earth in The Lord of the Rings to mythical beasts in Dungeons & Dragons, and from Medieval Times to the Renaissance Faire, the Middle Ages have inspired artists, playwrights, filmmakers, gamers, and writers for centuries. Indeed, no other historical era has captured the imaginations of so many creators.
This volume aims to uncover the many reasons why the Middle Ages have proven so applicable to a variety of modern moments from the eighteenth through the twenty-first century. These “medieval” worlds are often the perfect ground for exploring contemporary cultural concerns and anxieties, saying much more about the time and place in which they were created than they do about the actual conditions of the medieval period. With over 140 color illustrations, from sources ranging from thirteenth-century illuminated manuscripts to contemporary films and video games, and a preface by Game of Thrones costume designer Michele Clapton, The Fantasy of the Middle Ages will surprise and delight both enthusiasts and scholars.
This title is published to accompany an exhibition on view at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center from June 21 to September 11, 2022.
Who gets to speak for China? During the interwar years, when American condescension toward “barbarous” China yielded to a fascination with all things Chinese, a circle of writers sparked an unprecedented public conversation about American-Chinese relations. Hua Hsu tells the story of how they became ensnared in bitter rivalries over which one could claim the title of America’s leading China expert.
The rapturous reception that greeted The Good Earth—Pearl Buck’s novel about a Chinese peasant family—spawned a literary market for sympathetic writings about China. Stories of enterprising Americans making their way in a land with “four hundred million customers,” as Carl Crow said, found an eager audience as well. But on the margins—in Chinatowns, on Ellis Island, and inside FBI surveillance memos—a different conversation about the possibilities of a shared future was taking place.
A Floating Chinaman takes its title from a lost manuscript by H. T. Tsiang, an eccentric Chinese immigrant writer who self-published a series of visionary novels during this time. Tsiang discovered the American literary market to be far less accommodating to his more skeptical view of U.S.-China relations. His “floating Chinaman,” unmoored and in-between, imagines a critical vantage point from which to understand the new ideas of China circulating between the world wars—and today, as well.
Foote: A Mystery Novel
Tom Bredehoft West Virginia University Press, 2022 Library of Congress PS3602.R43347F66 2022 | Dewey Decimal 813.6
“Part mystery, part fable but all original, Jim Foote is sure to be one of your favorite literary detectives—cryptid or otherwise.” —Jordan Farmer, author of The Poison Flood and The Pallbearer
In the space of one weekend in Morgantown, West Virginia, private investigator Big Jim Foote finds himself at the center of two murder investigations. Suspected of one killing at a local festival, he locates the body of a missing person immediately after. The cops are watching him, and Big Jim has a secret he dares not reveal: he is a bigfoot living in plain sight, charged with keeping his people in the surrounding hills from being discovered. To protect the bigfoot secret, he must solve both murders—and convince himself it wasn’t a bigfoot who pulled the trigger.
Through the course of his investigations, Big Jim is helped by unique and well-rendered characters and friends in both his bigfoot and human communities. Readers are introduced to Appalachian mountain folk and traditional culture in new ways, even while Big Jim experiences the impact of the opioid epidemic on his own bigfoot kin. By centering a mythical creature as the unlikely protagonist in this enchanting literary murder mystery, Foote offers a winsome redefinition of a cryptid “monster” and breathes new life into the PI genre.
In this book, first published in 1985, Ernest G. Bormann explores mass persuasion in America from 1620 to 1860, examining closely four rhetorical communities: the revivals of 1739–1740, the hot gospel of the postrevolutionary period, the evangelical revival and reform of the 1830s, and the Free Soil and Republican parties. Each community varies greatly, but Bormann asserts that each succeeding community shares a rhetorical vision of restoring the “American Dream” that is essentially a modification of the previous visions. Thus, they form a family of rhetorical visions that constitutes a rhetorical tradition of importance in nineteenth-century American popular culture.
Full Metal Jhacket
Matthew Derby University of Michigan Press, 2015 Library of Congress PS3604.E73A6 2015 | Dewey Decimal 813.6
Two boys discover that the title of their stop-motion animated film about Vietnam has been taken by director Stanley Kubrick. A 150-year-old woman on the run from the government is tracked down by the company who extended her life. A military contractor carrying his robot son in a gym bag struggles to find his way out of the Nigerian delta during a bloody civil war. The wife of an up-and-coming politician grieves his infidelity by prowling rooftops with a sniper rifle. Following his celebrated debut collection, Super Flat Times, Matthew Derby delivers a disturbing new set of stories that plunges us into a lonely heartland of misfits, outcasts, and would-be assassins who lurk in the shadows, searching for connection and meaning in all the wrong places.
This collection of essays, family stories, and archival documents sheds new light on Christopher Tolkien’s contributions to the Tolkien legendarium.
Over more than four decades, J. R. R. Tolkien’s son and literary executor Christopher Tolkien completed some twenty-four volumes of his father’s work, much more than his father had succeeded in publishing during his own lifetime. Thanks to Christopher’s extraordinary publishing efforts and scholarship, readers today can survey and understand the vast landscape of Tolkien’s legendarium.
The Great Tales Never End sheds new light on J. R. R. Tolkien’s work and the debt owed to Christopher by the many Tolkien scholars who were privileged to work with him. Essays by world-renowned scholars and Tolkien family reminiscences offer unique insights into the publication process. What was Tolkien’s intended ending for The Lord of the Rings, and did it leave echoes in the stripped-down version that was actually published? What was the audience’s response to the first-ever adaptation of The Lord of the Rings—a radio dramatization that has now been deleted forever from the BBC’s archives?
The book is illustrated with color reproductions of J. R. R. Tolkien’s manuscripts, maps, drawings, and letters, as well as photographs of Christopher Tolkien and extracts from his works. Many of these documents have never been seen before, making this volume essential reading for Tolkien scholars, readers, and fans.
These 17 essays from the seventh annual J. Lloyd Eaton Conference examine the relationship between fantasy and science fiction.
They propose that fantasy and science fiction are not isolated commercial literary forms, but instead are literary forms worthy of the recognition reserved for traditional literature. Discussion of genre identification ranges from the standard forms of literary criticism embodied in Aristotle’s mimesis and poesis to innovative and possibly controversial points of view such as a theory of humor, a philosophy of time, and a detailed analysis of Dr. Seuss’s Cat in the Hat.
The essays provide not only a detailed study of literary elements but also the historical treatment of the material, its commercial use, and its relationship to similar literary forms such as the gothic tale and horror fiction. While few of the essayists agree with one another, they all contribute creative insights to the debate.
It has been half a century since a few now-canonical Latin American writers introduced magical realism to the world. In that time, new generations of Latinx writers and artists have used that watershed moment as a springboard into new and bold explorations of speculative and fantasy forms. Collectively, they have found exciting new ways to delve into Latinx identities and cultures across genres. Latinx Rising, the first anthology of science fiction and fantasy by Latinxs living in the United States, exuberantly displays the full range of their art.
The new and established voices assembled here (including Kathleen Alcalá, Carmen Maria Machado, Ernest Hogan, and other luminaries) invite us to imagine a Latinx past, present, and future that have not been whitewashed by mainstream perspectives. As in the best mixtapes, this anthology moves satisfyingly through the loud and brash, the quiet and thoughtful. There are ghosts, space aliens, robots—and a grandmother who unwittingly saves the universe through her cooking. The result is a deeply pleasurable read that pushes beyond magical realism and social realism to demonstrate all the thrilling possibilities of what Latinx literature can be.
A second novel, LESS THAN CHARMING tells the story of a world beyond a veil in which all of the characters writers have ever created are alive and living in their own society. As writers in the other—human world—constantly write new characters into existence, those characters emerge into this mirror world. A hierarchy evolves as every retelling of existing characters is layered onto the original, adding to and changing their personality, knowledge base, and sometimes their emotional stability. Prince Charming conspires to rule the society of characters, which includes every protagonist and foil you’ve ever found in a story or a book, and the prince is not as charming as you first imagine.
One character sands in the Prince’s way—Princess Sophia from Grimm’s lesser known “12 Dancing Princesses.” She’s stable—mostly—but Prince Charming is most definitely not. The good Storyteller and the First Character have tasked Sophia with stopping the Prince from destroying their world, and, by extension, ours.
The Lightning Jar
Christian Felt University of Iowa Press, 2018 Library of Congress PS3606.E435L55 2018 | Dewey Decimal 813.6
The Lightning Jar is about lonely children. It may be more about lonely children than any other book. These children are good at making imaginary friends but have trouble keeping them. For instance, there’s the Morra, who plunges the world into eternal winter. But she also teaches Mons the meaning of love and helps him burn down his house after some Gypsies turn it into a middle school.
Then there’s the Gorbel. Amanda invented it to scare the Guest, but it ended up liking him best. A bit like a cat but more like a spider, it turned out a lot cuter than she’d intended.
And the Wisps—they’re pretty unhappy about being dead. Karl accidentally turned his smallest cousin into a Wisp. They were trying to catch some lightning in a jar, but they caught the smallest cousin’s ghost instead. Karl had to drown it for its own good. Something similar happened with his grandma Astrid and a rock named Melisande.
But the loneliest character is probably Christian. He insists on being from Jämtland, where Karl and Amanda live. When his cousin Eskild got married, Christian rewrote their past so it’s like The Little Mermaid, except Eskild drowns and Christian doesn’t earn a soul.
In the spirit of Tove Jansson, William Blake, and Calvin & Hobbes, The Lightning Jar contains a volatile mix of innocence and experience, faith and doubt, nostalgia and a sense of all there is to gain by accepting reality on fresh terms.
This hilarious send-up of outlandish Southern characters includes a beautician, a luncheonette waitress, a radio evangelist, the widow of a gas and oil distributror and the residents of a fictional mobile home park in Arkansas as they find uproarious ways to enjoy life, needle each other, and remember the dear-departed.
In Metroimperial Intimacies Victor Román Mendoza combines historical, literary, and archival analysis with queer-of-color critique to show how U.S. imperial incursions into the Philippines enabled the growth of unprecedented social and sexual intimacies between native Philippine and U.S. subjects. The real and imagined intimacies—whether expressed through friendship, love, or eroticism—threatened U.S. gender and sexuality norms. To codify U.S. heteronormative behavior, the colonial government prohibited anything loosely defined as perverse, which along with popular representations of Filipinos, regulated colonial subjects and depicted them as sexually available, diseased, and degenerate. Mendoza analyzes laws, military records, the writing of Philippine students in the United States, and popular representations of Philippine colonial subjects to show how their lives, bodies, and desires became the very battleground for the consolidation of repressive legal, economic, and political institutions and practices of the U.S. colonial state. By highlighting the importance of racial and gendered violence in maintaining control at home and abroad, Mendoza demonstrates that studies of U.S. sexuality must take into account the reach and impact of U.S. imperialism.
Eighteen essays plus four examples from the ninth annual J. Lloyd Eaton Conference on Science Fiction and Fantasy Literature at the University of California, Riverside.
The concept of mindscape, Slusser and Rabkin explain, allows critics to focus on a single fundamental problem: "The constant need for a relation between mind and some being external to mind."
The essayists are Poul Anderson, Wendy Doniger O’Flaherty, Ronald J. Heckelman, David Brin, Frank McConnell, George E. Slusser, James Romm, Jack G. Voller, Peter Fitting, Michael R. Collings, Pascal J. Thomas, Reinhart Lutz, Joseph D. Miller, Gary Westfahl, Bill Lee, Max P. Belin, William Lomax, and Donald M. Hassler.
The book concludes with four authors discussing examples of mindscape. The participants are Jean-Pierre Barricelli, Gregory Benford, Gary Kern, and David N. Samuelson.
An eyewitness to profound change affecting marine environments on the Newfoundland coast, Antony Adler argues that the history of our relationship with the ocean lies as much in what we imagine as in what we discover.
We have long been fascinated with the oceans, seeking “to pierce the profundity” of their depths. In studying the history of marine science, we also learn about ourselves. Neptune’s Laboratory explores the ways in which scientists, politicians, and the public have invoked ocean environments in imagining the fate of humanity and of the planet—conjuring ideal-world fantasies alongside fears of our species’ weakness and ultimate demise.
Oceans gained new prominence in the public imagination in the early nineteenth century as scientists plumbed the depths and marine fisheries were industrialized. Concerns that fish stocks could be exhausted soon emerged. In Europe these fears gave rise to internationalist aspirations, as scientists sought to conduct research on an oceanwide scale and nations worked together to protect their fisheries. The internationalist program for marine research waned during World War I, only to be revived in the interwar period and again in the 1960s. During the Cold War, oceans were variously recast as battlefields, post-apocalyptic living spaces, and utopian frontiers.
The ocean today has become a site of continuous observation and experiment, as probes ride the ocean currents and autonomous and remotely operated vehicles peer into the abyss. Embracing our fears, fantasies, and scientific investigations, Antony Adler tells the story of our relationship with the seas.
David Edwards and Jay Cantor; photographs by Daniel Faust Harvard University Press, 2007 Library of Congress PQ2719.E37N53 2007
Niche tells the story of an artist who meets a scientist and through the encounter makes a hypothesis: If the artist became a stem cell and then divided into a neuron, would he discover the meaning of intelligence? David Edwards and Jay Cantor introduce a new fiction genre—the novel catalogue—to coincide with the opening of the new art and design innovation center in Paris, Le Laboratoire. In the novel catalogue, the process through which creators create matters as much as the works that result from the creation. The novel catalogue fictionalizes the creative process of an exhibition season which opens with the artistic outcome of an experiment between Fabrice Hyber, a French artist, and Robert Langer of MIT.
The opalescent deserts of the American Southwest have become romantic icons in the public imagination through the words of writers, the images of artists and photographers, and the visual storytelling of filmmakers. In this spirited, personal, beautifully written book, Peter Wild explores the lives and works of sixteen writers whose words have shaped our visions of the opal desert. Wild begins with Cabeza de Vaca, whose Relación of his desert wanderings sent treasure-hungry Spaniards searching for cities of gold. He goes on to discuss the works of both widely read and lesser-known nineteenth- and twentieth-century authors, including such luminaries as Mary Austin, Joseph Wood Krutch, Edward Abbey, Ann Zwinger, and Charles Bowden. He links all the writers as explorers of one kind or another, searching for tangible or intangible treasures, some finding and some losing their dreams in the opal desert.
The Ozark Trilogy (previously published in 1981, Doubleday) is a widely acclaimed fantasy/science fiction story with, as the title suggests, very strong ties to the Ozark region. Twelve Fair Kingdoms, The Grand Jubilee, And Then There’ll Be Fireworks—the books that comprise the trilogy—chronicle life on the planet Ozark and its Confederation of Continents, which are appropriately named Arkansaw, Oklahomah, Mizzurah, Tinaseeh, Kintucky, and Marktwain. However, the story told here involves much more than a mere transplant of Ozark culture and heritage onto a new planet. While this new Ozark culture maintains and even intensifies many of the “real” Ozark traditions and customs (for instance, “Grannys” hold significant, stabilizing social roles and are important sources of wisdom), the planet Ozark combines many new, fantastical elements with traditional ways. Mules on Ozark fly, and the wise “Grannys” also work magic.
The protagonist of The Ozark Trilogy, Responsible of Brightwater, appears at the center of Ozark society, a society she must save from evil magic, civil war, and, ultimately, alien invasion. As Responsible travels from continent to continent in an attempt to discover and squelch the evil magic and calm the civil unrest, we are witness to many dangerous and sometimes comical adventures along the way, including a spectacular flying Mule crash and a magic duel with a Granny gone bad.
Elgin has created a fantastic world infused with the folk traditions, social and familial hierarchies, and traditional dialect of the Ozarks. While parallels might be drawn between, for example, the break-up of the Confederacy of Continents on planet Ozark and the American Civil War, Elgin comments on aspects of Ozark history and tradition in a non didactic way. The trilogy, with its strong heroine and witty engagement of tradition, is a classic of Ozark literature.
In Racist Love Leslie Bow traces the ways in which Asian Americans become objects of anxiety and desire. Conceptualizing these feelings as “racist love,” she explores how race is abstracted and then projected onto Asianized objects. Bow shows how anthropomorphic objects and images such as cartoon animals in children’s books, home décor and cute tchotchkes, contemporary visual art, and artificially intelligent robots function as repositories of seemingly positive feelings and attachment to Asianness. At the same time, Bow demonstrates that these Asianized proxies reveal how fetishistic attraction and pleasure serve as a source of anti-Asian bias and violence. By outlining how attraction to popular representations of Asianness cloaks racial resentment and fears of globalization, Bow provides a new means of understanding the ambivalence surrounding Asians in the United States while offering a theory of the psychological, affective, and symbolic dynamics of racist love in contemporary America.
2021 Comic Studies Society Prize for Edited Collection
From Superman and Batman to the X-Men and Young Avengers, Supersex interrogates the relationship between heroism and sexuality, shedding new light on our fantasies of both.
From Superman, created in 1938, to the transmedia DC and Marvel universes of today, superheroes have always been sexy. And their sexiness has always been controversial, inspiring censorship and moral panic. Yet though it has inspired jokes and innuendos, accusations of moral depravity, and sporadic academic discourse, the topic of superhero sexuality is like superhero sexuality itself—seemingly obvious yet conspicuously absent. Supersex: Sexuality, Fantasy, and the Superhero is the first scholarly book specifically devoted to unpacking the superhero genre’s complicated relationship with sexuality.
Exploring sexual themes and imagery within mainstream comic books, television shows, and films as well as independent and explicitly pornographic productions catering to various orientations and kinks, Supersex offers a fresh—and lascivious—perspective on the superhero genre’s historical and contemporary popularity. Across fourteen essays touching on Superman, Batman, the X-Men, and many others, Anna F. Peppard and her contributors present superhero sexuality as both dangerously exciting and excitingly dangerous, encapsulating the superhero genre’s worst impulses and its most productively rebellious ones. Supersex argues that sex is at the heart of our fascination with superheroes, even—and sometimes especially—when the capes and tights stay on.
Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth
Edited by Catherine McIlwaine Bodleian Library Publishing, 2018 Library of Congress PR6039.O32Z6956 2018 | Dewey Decimal 002.09
The range of J. R. R. Tolkien’s talents is remarkable. Not only was he an accomplished linguist and philologist, as well as a scholar of Anglo-Saxon and medieval literature and Norse folklore, but also a skillful illustrator and storyteller. Drawing on these talents, he created a universe which is for many readers as real as the physical world they inhabit daily.
Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth explores the huge creative endeavor behind Tolkien’s enduring popularity. Lavishly illustrated with three hundred images of his manuscripts, drawings, maps, and letters, the book traces the creative process behind his most famous literary works—The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion—and reproduces personal photographs and private papers, many of which have never been seen before in print.
Six essays introduce the reader to the person of J. R. R. Tolkien and to main themes in his life and work, including the influence of northern languages and legends on the creation of his own legendarium; his concept of “Faërie” as an enchanted literary realm; the central importance of his invented languages in his fantasy writing; his visual imagination and its emergence in his artwork; and the encouragement he derived from his close friend C. S. Lewis and their literary group the Inklings.
The book brings together the largest collection of original Tolkien material ever assembled in a single volume. Drawing on the extensive archives of the Tolkien collections at the Bodleian Libraries, Oxford, which stretch to more than five hundred boxes, and Marquette University, Milwaukee, as well as private collections, this hugely ambitious and exquisitely produced book draws together the worlds of J. R. R. Tolkien – scholarly, literary, creative, and domestic—offering a rich and detailed understanding and appreciation of this extraordinary author.
This landmark publication, produced on the occasion of a major exhibition at the Bodleian Libraries in Oxford in 2018 and at the Morgan Library in New York in 2019, is set to become a standard work in the literature on J. R. R. Tolkien.
Whiff is the new novel by David Edwards (Séguier). It is illustrated by the Japanese Manga artist Junko Murata and continues the story of Edwards’ first novel, Niche, co-authored with Jay Cantor (Plessis). Whiff derives from an actual experiment performed in Paris at the art and science innovation center, Le Laboratoire. In this latest experiment, the double-Michelin-starred chef Thierry Marx collaborated with the colloidal scientist Jérôme Bibette to introduce a new way of encapsulating flavors. Wishing to present these delectable capsules in an unusual way, a group of art and science college students developed with Edwards a new way of eating by aerosol, called whiffing. Whiff, whose publication coincides with the commercialization by Le Laboratoire of aerosolized chocolate, explores how we dream, and realize our dreams, through surprising combinations of aesthetic and analytical methods. Whiff is also accompanied by the first “whiffing” recipes.