Recent Faculty Publications

July 30, 2019

Congratulations to these faculty and their recent book publications:

 

Religion Around John Donne coverJoshua Eckhardt’s Religion Around John Donne, published by Penn State University Press, examines the religious texts and books that surrounded the poems, sermons, and inscriptions of the early modern poet and preacher John Donne. Focusing on the material realities legible in manuscripts and Sammelbände, bookshops and private libraries, Eckhardt uncovers the myriad ways in which Donne’s writings were received and presented, first by his contemporaries, and later by subsequent readers of his work.

 

Annotated Prison Writings of Oscar Wilde coverNicholas Frankel’s The Annotated Prison Writings of Oscar Wilde, published by Harvard University Press, examines renown author's prison writings, accompanied by historical illustrations and his rich facing-page annotations. As Frankel shows, Wilde experienced prison conditions designed to break even the toughest spirit, and yet his writings from this period display an imaginative and verbal brilliance left largely intact. Wilde also remained politically steadfast, determined that his writings should inspire improvements to Victorian England’s grotesque regimes of punishment.  At once a savage indictment of the society that jailed him and a moving testimony to private sufferings, Wilde’s prison writings―illuminated by Frankel’s extensive notes―reveal a very different man from the famous dandy and aesthete who shocked and amused the English-speaking world.

 

The River Twice coverKathleen Graber’s The River Twice will be published this fall as a part of Princeton University Press’s Series of Contemporary Poets.  Taking its title from Heraclitus's most famous fragment, The River Twice is an elegiac meditation on impermanence and change. The world presented in these poems is a fluid one in which so much―including space and time, the subterranean realm of dreams, and language itself―seems protean, as the speaker's previously familiar understanding of the self and the larger systems around it gives way. It is an impressive new collection from a poet whose previous book was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award.

 

Digital Sound Studies coverMary Caton Lingold’s co-edited volume Digital Sound Studies is now available in print from Duke University Press.  You can read the Introduction for free online. The book details how the digital turn has created new opportunities for scholars across disciplines to use sound in their scholarship. Drawing on multiple disciplines—including rhetoric and composition, performance studies, anthropology, history, and information science—the contributors to Digital Sound Studies bring digital humanities and sound studies into productive conversation while probing the assumptions behind the use of digital tools and technologies in academic life.

 

Virgin of Prince Street by Sonja Livingston coverSonja Livingston’s The Virgin of Prince Street, published by University of Nebraska Press, chronicles her quest, offering an intimate and unusually candid view into Livingston’s relationship with the swiftly changing Catholic Church and into her own changing heart. Ultimately, Livingston’s meditations on quirky rituals and fading traditions thoughtfully and dynamically interrogate traditional elements of sacramental devotion, especially as they relate to concepts of religion, relationships, and the sacred.

 

Clint McCown’s The Dictionary of Unspellable Noises: New & Selected Poems, 1975-2018 is his latest collection of engaging and wide-ranging verse asks important questions about nature, experience, and the forces of the universe. “Language unspools across time,” he writes in “Abracadabra,” “while experience arrives all at once.” Open this book to any page and you’ll find McCown turning the universe over and over in his mind to find the answers to his sometimes unusual and always perceptive questions.

 

Understanding Alice Adams coverBryant Mangum’s Understanding Alice Adams was published by University of South Carolina Press. Until Bryant’s monograph, Adams (1926-1999), author of ten novels and five collections of short stories, had not yet received a sustained, book-length treatment like the one he carefully and fulsomely provides. Mangum explores how Adams treats love, family, work, friendship, and nostalgia. He identifies hope as a thread that links all her main characters, despite how accurately she had anticipated the complexities and challenges that accompanied increased freedom for women in the later twentieth century.

 

The Robotic Imaginary coverJennifer Rhee’s The Robotic Imaginary: The Human and the Price of Dehumanized Labor, published by University of Minnesota Press, traces the connections between human-like robots and AI at the site of dehumanization and exploited labor. The word robot—introduced in Karel Capek’s 1920 play R.U.R.—derives from rabota, the Czech word for servitude or forced labor. A century later, the play’s dystopian themes of dehumanization and exploited labor are being played out in factories, workplaces, and battlefields. Rhee examines the provocative and productive connections of contemporary robots in technology, film, art, and literature. Centered around the twinned processes of anthropomorphization and dehumanization, she analyzes the coevolution of cultural and technological robots and artificial intelligence, arguing that it is through the conceptualization of the human and, more important, the dehumanized that these multiple spheres affect and transform each other.

 

Woven Shades of Green coverTim Wenzell’s long-awaited anthology of Irish nature writing, Woven Shades of Green will be released with Rutgers University Press. Woven Shades of Green is an annotated selection of literature from authors who focus on the natural world and the beauty of Ireland. The anthology begins with the Irish monks and their largely anonymous nature poetry, written at a time when Ireland was heavily forested. A section follows devoted to the changing Irish landscape, through both deforestation and famine. The anthology then turns to the nature literature of the Irish Literary Revival, while part four of the anthology shifts to modern Irish nature poetry. Finally, the anthology concludes with a section on various Irish naturalist writers, followed by a comprehensive list of environmental organizations in Ireland, which seek to preserve the natural beauty of this unique country.