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Original Essays | August 21, 2014

Richard Bausch: IMG Why Literature Can Save Us



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    Before, During, After

    Richard Bausch 9780307266262

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To the River

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To the River Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A beautiful, lyrical book tells the tale of the river in which Virginia Woolf drowned, and heralds the arrival of a major new voice in nature writing

One midsummer week more than 60 years after Virginia Woolf drowned in the Ouse in 1941, Olivia Laing walked that same Sussex river from source to sea. The result is a passionate investigation into how history resides in a landscape—and how ghosts never quite leave the places they love. Along the way, Laing explores the roles rivers play in human lives, tracing their intricate flow through literature and mythology alike. She excavates all sorts of stories from the Ouse's marshy banks, from the brutal Barons' War of the 13th century to the "Dinosaur Hunters," the 19th-century amateur naturalists who first cracked the fossil code. Central among these ghosts is, of course, Virginia Woolf herself: her life, her writing, and her watery death. Woolf is the most constant companion on Laing's journey, and this book can be read in part as a biography of this extraordinary English writer, refracted back through the river she loved. But other writers float through these pages too—among them Iris Murdoch, Shakespeare, Homer, and Kenneth Grahame, author of the riverside classic The Wind in the Willows. The result is a wonderfully discursive read, interweaving biography, history, nature writing, and memoir, and driven by Laing's deep understanding of science and cultural history.

About the Author

Olivia Laing writes and reviews widely for the Guardian, the New Statesman, the Observer, and the Times Literary Supplement, among other publications. Before becoming a journalist, she practiced as a medical herbalist specializing in the treatment of anxiety and depression.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781847677938
Author:
Laing, Olivia
Publisher:
Canongate UK
Subject:
Essays
Subject:
Literary Criticism : General
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20120931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8 x 5 in 1 lb

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Related Subjects

Biography » Literary
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Health and Self-Help » Self-Help » General
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Reference
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Biology
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General

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