All Questions

2
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0answers
12 views

Did Sandburg acknowledge Twain's influence?

In 1886, Mark Twain wrote an essay entitled "The New Dynasty" Its theme, and much of its language, are quite similar to Carl Sandburg's poem "I Am the People, the Mob" of half a century later. It is ...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

Were T. S. Eliot's notes to The Waste Land partly inspired by plagiarism laws?

T. S. Eliot's poem "The Waste Land" is usually printed with the poet's notes. However, these notes were not present in the original edition and were added in a later edition dating from the same year (...
2
votes
1answer
144 views

What is the significance of the traveler carrying writing materials in Ivanhoe?

The Jew's dress, which appeared to have suffered considerably from the storm, was a plain russet cloak of many folds, covering a dark purple tunic. He had large boots lined with fur, and a belt around ...
5
votes
0answers
96 views

What is The Princess Bride's “reunion scene” that you had to write to the publisher for?

In The Princess Bride by William Goldman, there is an extended section where the author says that he wanted to include a reunion scene when Buttercup first discovers that the "man in black" is in fact ...
3
votes
1answer
50 views

Where did Edmond Malone place the Tempest in the chronology of Shakespeare's plays?

In an excellent answer to one of my previous questions, verbose writes: Since The Tempest is the first play printed in the First Folio, it was often assumed to be an early play. Scholars such as ...
5
votes
1answer
344 views

What was the exact wording from Ivanhoe of this advice on how to free yourself from slavery?

All you need to free yourself from slavery is a couple of pints of beer I read Ivanhoe for the first time translated into Spanish, and am having a heck of time finding the material in any English ...
5
votes
1answer
90 views

Dystopian novel that may or may not have been ahead of its time

Think sci-fi but only about ~20-30 years out. It takes place in NYC and has a huge emphasis on the media, entertainment, and cultural conflict in America. One of the protagonists hosts a radio show ...
2
votes
1answer
50 views

Fantasy book from my childhood: female protagonist, Blood Ore or Blood Metal for taking attributes

The series I remember is about a young female lead. She is in a world where human trafficking is common. The rich and powerful are able to take another person's attributes through the use of a Blood ...
3
votes
1answer
39 views

Was the assassination plot in The Thirty-Nine Steps based on any real plot?

In John Buchan's famous short novel The Thirty-Nine Steps, much of the plot (ha) revolves around a German plot to assassinate the Greek Premier, which is thwarted by the story's hero. All this happens ...
1
vote
0answers
31 views

How has Okonkwo succeed in resisting the colonizer through word-play in “Things Fall Apart”?

In Things Fall Apart, Okonkwo refuses to speak the language of the colonizer (the white man) , rather he uses his own language (Ibo) to deconstruct the language of the colonizer. So, how has Okonkwo ...
1
vote
0answers
23 views

Book about boys camping in the wilderness; a Danish one can't speak English, but understands it

This middle grade/children's book was from 2015 or earlier, probably after 2009. It was about four to six or so boys camping in the wilderness. They were scared of bears attacking them, but none ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Short sci-fi story called “Blood and Lust”

Many years ago I read a short story that I think was titled "Blood and Lust". It featured two entities named Blood and Lust who would travel through history making very small adjustments to see how ...
5
votes
1answer
64 views

Book about a 10/11 year old boy with autism or something similar

This middle-grade novel was from sometime between 2000 and 2016, I believe. It was by an American or British author, who died before 2016, as mentioned on the back cover. The protagonist was a 10/11 ...
4
votes
1answer
70 views

Poem with A's and T's representing Ford model A's and T's in traffic

I'm looking for an English poem, in fact I think it was at least two poems, that consisted of capital A's, representing the Ford Model A, moving as if in traffic, and another that had both A's and T's....
5
votes
1answer
73 views

Is Steinbeck's “The Moon is Down” set in Norway?

I recently read The Moon is Down by John Steinbeck and I noticed that the conquerors and the conquered are not defined. Throughout the novel are several allusions that the conquerors are German. They ...
3
votes
1answer
124 views

Anthology: one story about an astronaut falling on flowers, another about a wife trying to kill her husband

I am trying to remember the name of a book with short stories inside. I remember 2 stories from it: There was an astronaut on a foreign planet with flowers all around called floofs or phoofs, I ...
0
votes
0answers
128 views

Explore the significance of imprisonment in The Tempest and Hag-seed. How do the textual conversations add to our understanding of both texts?

“This is the extent of it, Felix muses. My island domain. My place of exile. My penance. My theatre,” - Margaret Atwood, Hag-Seed Explore the significance of imprisonment, isolation and the role of ...
4
votes
1answer
46 views

What exactly does Dickens mean to say here?

In the beginning of Stave 2, after Marley's ghost has disappeared, Scrooge wakes up believing he has overslept and that the time at which the first ghost was to appear has passed. To confirm this, he ...
1
vote
1answer
138 views

Do genre(s) of literature exist which take advantage of the Zeigarnik Effect?

It is probable that humans remember unfinished/incomplete tasks better than completed tasks. I am wondering if there is a genre/style of literature which takes advantage of this to boost the ...
2
votes
2answers
75 views

What led Tolstoy to depict that a person would have a change of heart after throwing themselves under a train?

After having read a few different works by Tolstoy, I have come to the conclusion that his main goal is to accurately depict what goes through a person's mind in various situations. One of the most ...
4
votes
2answers
152 views

Three Musketeers - the diamond studs

The plot of the first part of The Three Musketeers revolves around 12 diamond studs that Queen Anne d'Autriche gives to the Duke of Buckingham. What exactly were those studs? I mean, what was this ...
5
votes
1answer
51 views

What kind of “portable telephone” does H. P. Lovecraft write about in his letter to August Derleth?

The letter is called "Letter to August Derleth". He describes a frightful dream he had to Derleth. In this dream, he and his friend Loveman go to a old cemetery to investigate a sepulchre and Loveman ...
4
votes
0answers
58 views

Did T. S. Eliot write crime novels under a pseudonym?

T. S. Eliot has a reputation as a difficult and serious poet. He also wrote very serious essays about other serious authors. However, according to Johannes Kleinstück (T. S. Eliot - mit ...
7
votes
0answers
105 views

Can three unstressed syllables constitute a substitute foot in Shakespeare?

While trying to ascertain the accentuation of certain names in Shakespeare, by analyzing lines of verse where they occur, I encountered a couple of lines that I was tempted to scan with a substitute ...
1
vote
0answers
17 views

Thomas McElwain as Ali Haydar?

On this website of translated Turkish poetry, a traditional hymn of sacrifice from a Turkish Alevi village is included in its English translation, with a note at the top signed "Ali Haydar", although ...
4
votes
1answer
83 views

Looking for a shoujo/romance one-shot manga

I am looking for a short manga or a one-shot (not really sure) about the main guy who bumps into a girl on his way to school and the girl drops her hair pin which she got from her crush (childhood ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

Understanding Shyam Saran's “How India sees the world”

I am reading Shyam Saran's How India sees the world. I came across this paragraph which talks about the "sense of being Indian": There is an immemorial and abiding sense of affinity drawn from a ...
3
votes
1answer
54 views

Name of Play about a Nazi-occupied (Nordic?) Village Population of Which Underestimated by Occupiers

So, I remember watching this television play probably adopted from a more famous original opus about a Nazi-occupied village somewhere in Europe (I don't recall where exactly, but perhaps the story ...
6
votes
2answers
510 views

What did Alexander Pope mean by “Expletives their feeble Aid do join”?

Alexander Pope's 'An Essay on Criticism', lines 337–349: But most by Numbers judge a Poet's Song, And smooth or rough, with them, is right or wrong; In the bright Muse tho' thousand Charms ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

What did Steven Pressfield mean by “give” in this context?

Resistance's goal is not to wound or disable. Resistance aims to kill. Its target is the epicenter of our being: our genius, our soul, the unique and priceless gift we were put on earth to give and ...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

How does one go about translating into English a foreign language book that has been poorly translated before?

Years ago I came across a marvelous book that was just published in Russian. The book was full of humor as well as deep observations about human nature and politics. The book quickly became quite ...
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Was Shakespeare a member of the lower classes?

Am I correct to assume there is a feud between academics considering Shakespeare's social origins? I understand that he was probably born as a member of the working classes (or even the Elizabethan ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

help identifying book in 18th or 19th century France and England

The main character is a young woman (late teens? early 20s?) She's in Paris with an (aunt?) and they're discussing what to do since her father has suddenly died. If they return to England, her brother ...
2
votes
0answers
17 views

Bakhtin quote about flat plots and characters

Through serendipity (this question led me to Wikipedia article about Ian Watt) I found that that the Russian literary theorist Mikhael Bakhtin is supposed to have written that certain genres with flat ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

Mann's introduction to the magic mountain?

I remember that the edition of the magic mountain I read around 7 or 8 years ago contained an introduction that was written by Mann and inspired by a lecture he gave about his book. I remember it ...
2
votes
0answers
49 views

What is the difference between emotions and feelings in Eliot's essay Tradition and the Individual Talent?

In his most famous essay, "Traditional and the Individual Talent", T. S. Eliot appears to make a distinction between emotions and feelings. Read especially the following passage (emphasis mine): ...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

Books that are narrated using various points of view of the main characters

I recently read the book The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. To be honest I did not like the storyline of the book. However, I found the way the story is told based on the different viewpoints of ...
3
votes
1answer
42 views

Novel about a contract killer being pursued by other killers - Started with an icepick guy and ended with a Latino woman disguised as a cleaning lady

I don't remember exactly when I read this, probably over 10 years ago, somewhere in the late 2000s. The protagonist is some sort of hired killer, who winds up being the target of a contract, leading ...
0
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0answers
42 views

Question about a personal interpretation of Mckee's basic elements of Story: events and beats

I would like to propose a "technical/practical" interpretation of Mckee's basic story elements. My interpretation is some sort of a set theoretical motivated, on which the construction of the next ...
2
votes
2answers
61 views

When was each article of Avowals and Denials written?

Avowals and Denials is a collection of articles by Chesterton first published in 1934. Is it possible to know when each individual article was first published?
2
votes
1answer
63 views

What exactly do these words from “The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin” mean in this context?

I read the following in "The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, Volume I": A portrait from Mr. Carlyle's portfolio not regretted by any who loved the original, surely confers sufficient ...
3
votes
1answer
119 views

When did Aristotle's Poetics first become available in England?

In a comment on a recent question about T. S. Eliot's essay on Hamlet, Peter Shor wrote, According to Aristotle, in great tragedy the hero must have a fatal flaw that leads to his downfall. What ...
3
votes
1answer
164 views

Interpreting T.S. Eliot's “The Waste Land”

I'm having trouble interpreting the significance of a specific stanza in T.S. ELiot's "The Waste Land". “What is that noise now? What is the wind doing?”       &...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

What does sentence mean from “Literary Composition” by Lovecraft?

This is from a part in the article that Lovecraft lists most common mistakes beginners make when writing. The parts I didn't get is in bold. Want of correspondence in number between noun and verb ...
2
votes
1answer
74 views

Persuasion by Jane Austen: Why were Anne and Lady Russell talking about curtains when they saw Captain Wentworth passing by?

From chapter 19 of Persuasion by Jane Austen: At last, Lady Russell drew back her head. ‘Now, how would she speak of him?’ ‘You will wonder,’ said she, ‘what has been fixing my eye so long; ...
2
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0answers
19 views

In Robinson Crusoe, why does Defoe include the Journal which recaps the events that are already narrated?

Reading this book for the first time, I was surprised by the structure of the story. After Robinson is shipwrecked, we learn about his survival methods from his retrospective point-of-view. Then ...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

Perception of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet

It is a common trope that high schoolers and perhaps many more people view Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet as overdone and somewhat cheesy and shallow, for lack of better words. Would it have been ...
3
votes
0answers
40 views

Why is there no spelling consistency in Robert Ludlum's books?

I just started reading "The Bourne Supremacy" and I see that in some places Robert Ludlum spells things the British way, and in others the American way. For example, on one page you'd see "favorite" ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

What is the first work of literature to reference existentialism?

Taking a class on existentialism and literature and I'm curious how far back the idea has been referenced in literature. What is the first work of literature to express the ideas of existentialism?
3
votes
0answers
43 views

Why is Paul so torn when he stabs the French soldier?

In All Quiet in the Western Front, the protagonist and narrator, Paul Bäumer, hides in a shell hole between the trenches and is forced to kill a French soldier that stumbles in beside him during an ...

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