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As of This Writing: The Essential Essays, 1968-2002

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As of This Writing: The Essential Essays, 1968-2002 Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

It is impossible not to be awed by the remarkable range and massive erudition of Clive James, one of the greatest literary critics of our age. In the tradition of Edmund Wilson, James is a brilliant stylist so perceptive (and funny) that he renders the twisted literary terrain of the twentieth century remarkably accessible. In As of This Writing James has assembled his most ambitious and expansive collection to date, a book that features forty-nine essays on poetry, film, culture, and fiction written between 1967 and 2001. Whether commenting on poets like Auden or Jarrell, novelists like D. H. Lawrence and James Agee (not to mention Judith Krantz), or filmmakers like Fellini or Bogdanovich, James delights his readers with his manic energy and critical aplomb. This volume is a literary education that few recent books can rival.

Review:

"James is among the very small number of great critics writing today ? a group that includes Martin Amis, Peter Ackroyd, John Updike, Gore Vidal, and Christopher Hitchens. All write with verve and recklessness, which they combine with extraordinary erudition. All are imbued with what James calls 'the spirit of Grub Street' ? all, that is, write in 'the tradition of supplying a supplement and a corrective to ... the dust contractors of the universities.' The authors and subjects he examines in this collection of 'essays' ? really review essays ? range from Nabokov to Judith Krantz, from Richard Nixon's memoirs to the Final Solution; from Stevie Smith to Peter Bogdanovich, from Philip Larkin to Marilyn Monroe. (Among and within his pieces James artfully juxtaposes the high and the low ? a tendency he shares with Ackroyd. Both men have been regular television critics.) He is penetrating on all these (especially Larkin), but I find him most astute and heartfelt in his assessments of his fellow literary journalists." Benjamin Schwarz, The Atlantic Monthly (read the entire Atlantic review)

Review:

"An additional pleasure are the postscripts where James comments on and provides explanations of (and sometimes excuses for) the ideas contained in these previously published essays....It would be wrong to say that these afterthoughts are more enjoyable than the essays they comment on, but in many places, James's thoughts on his own thoughts are as penetrating as the thesis that sent his critical imagination wandering in the first place." Publishers Weekly

Synopsis:

"Clive James is in the tradition of Hazlitt, Bagehot, and Edmund Wilson, with a gusto to succeed theirs."--John Bayley

Synopsis:

In "As of This Writing" James has assembled his most ambitious and expansive collection to date, a book that features 49 essays on poetry, film, culture, and fiction written between 1967 and 2001.

About the Author

Clive James is the author of more than twenty books of criticism, autobiography, and travel writing. His criticism has appeared in The New Yorker. He lives in London.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780393051803
Author:
James, Clive
Publisher:
W. W. Norton & Company
Location:
New York
Subject:
Essays
Subject:
English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh
Subject:
Anthologies-Essays
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Publication Date:
20030631
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
640
Dimensions:
9.6 x 6.5 x 1.4 in 2.055 lb

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » Essays
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General
Humanities » Literary Criticism » Literary and Cultural Studies

As of This Writing: The Essential Essays, 1968-2002 New Hardcover
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Product details 640 pages W. W. Norton & Company - English 9780393051803 Reviews:
"Review" by , "James is among the very small number of great critics writing today ? a group that includes Martin Amis, Peter Ackroyd, John Updike, Gore Vidal, and Christopher Hitchens. All write with verve and recklessness, which they combine with extraordinary erudition. All are imbued with what James calls 'the spirit of Grub Street' ? all, that is, write in 'the tradition of supplying a supplement and a corrective to ... the dust contractors of the universities.' The authors and subjects he examines in this collection of 'essays' ? really review essays ? range from Nabokov to Judith Krantz, from Richard Nixon's memoirs to the Final Solution; from Stevie Smith to Peter Bogdanovich, from Philip Larkin to Marilyn Monroe. (Among and within his pieces James artfully juxtaposes the high and the low ? a tendency he shares with Ackroyd. Both men have been regular television critics.) He is penetrating on all these (especially Larkin), but I find him most astute and heartfelt in his assessments of his fellow literary journalists." (read the entire Atlantic review)
"Review" by , "An additional pleasure are the postscripts where James comments on and provides explanations of (and sometimes excuses for) the ideas contained in these previously published essays....It would be wrong to say that these afterthoughts are more enjoyable than the essays they comment on, but in many places, James's thoughts on his own thoughts are as penetrating as the thesis that sent his critical imagination wandering in the first place."
"Synopsis" by , "Clive James is in the tradition of Hazlitt, Bagehot, and Edmund Wilson, with a gusto to succeed theirs."--John Bayley
"Synopsis" by , In "As of This Writing" James has assembled his most ambitious and expansive collection to date, a book that features 49 essays on poetry, film, culture, and fiction written between 1967 and 2001.
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