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4
votes
0answers
44 views

Why does isolating “there” on its own line sound less emphatic in Korean than English?

I was reading Translator’s Note: Three Poems by Ko Un from the Poetry Foundation and came across this excerpt: We translated “명사도 동사도 다” (“all nouns and verbs”) as “all words,” which sounds less ...
3
votes
2answers
75 views

Young-readers book of short-stories from 1960s or 70s - “Teenaged Millionaire”?

Daniel’s question a few days ago - about the 1960s kids’ book with “invisible dust” - got me thinking. I remember the grammar school book-buying program Daniel mentions - I think that may have ...
-1
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0answers
52 views

Why do authors block out certain words in literature? [duplicate]

For example, in Les Miserables (my english translation) the first lines read: In 1815, M. Charles-François-Bienvenu Myriel was Bishop of D—— He was an old man of about seventy-five years of age; he ...
4
votes
2answers
319 views

What's the connection between millennia of time travel and waiting for a bus?

One of Ko Un's very short poems, translated by Brother Anthony of Taizé and available on the Brief Poems blog, goes as follows: Some say they can recall a thousand years Some say they have already ...
3
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0answers
57 views

What short story has a soldier deliver a secret message like “shoot the messenger”?

I recall a story, written in English, about a British or American WW1 or WW2 soldier who has to cross enemy lines to deliver a message which he was not to read. In the rain and mud, fearing the ink ...
7
votes
1answer
86 views

How has knowledge of the Ur-Hamlet evolved over the centuries?

I recently read in an excellent verbose answer that the existence of the Ur-Hamlet, on which Shakespeare's Hamlet is presumed to have been based, is known from a throwaway line of Thomas Lodge, ...
2
votes
0answers
39 views

What arguments have scholars used to characterise Kafka's The Metamorphosis as magical realism?

In comments below the question What style are Kafka's novels?, Peter Shor said, Kafka has been characterized as "magical realism". On the other hand, there are lots of people who disagree ...
7
votes
1answer
375 views

What is the pun in Fowles' The Magus?

Google has not helped me figure this out. This is from the first or second page of the book (I'm not sure exactly since my electronic copy of the book doesn't seem to have page numbers): I saw very ...
4
votes
1answer
51 views

Help identify the story “I did not sell my child”; ends with the grown up child deserting parents

I read this story a long time ago in one of our class readings. It keeps coming back to my mind but none of my Internet searches return a story except for news articles. The story goes like this: A ...
2
votes
0answers
33 views

Looking for a Christmas/Saint Nicholas book

Sorry if this is off-topic. When I was a child (around 10 so early 90's), my grandparents gave me a book about the history of Santa Clause/Saint Nicholas/other alternate names. What I recall about the ...
3
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0answers
37 views

What is the English title of Tolstoy's memoirs “Without love, It's easier to live”?

I am trying to find the English name of the memoirs by Leo Tostoy titled Without love, It's easier to live (original Russian title Без любви жить легче). I could not find any mention of it neither in ...
4
votes
1answer
93 views

Horatio Hornblower book as part of anthology?

I first read C. S. Forester’s Beat to Quarters as a teenager in the mid-1970s. I remember it as having been included in a Readers’ Digest Condensed Book, but the Wikipedia listing of these books ...
4
votes
2answers
119 views

Can the influence of the 1918 “Spanish flu” pandemic be seen in T.S. Eliot's “The Waste Land”?

A Guardian article from summer 2020, "The Covid novels are arriving. And they'll be a warning to future generations" by Laura Spinney, includes some discussion of the (apparently minimal) ...
5
votes
1answer
199 views

What does “steal my crown” mean in Kacey Musgraves's Butterflies?

I was enjoying a song "Butterflies" by Kacey Musgraves and in the lyrics there is "Stealing my heart 'stead of stealing my crown". What does "steal my crown" mean? I am ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

1960s kids book with “invisible” dust which people think improves everything but doesn't actually exist

In the 1960s, my grammar school (grades 1-8) encouraged us to buy cheap kids books; they had lists and we checked off what we wanted and paid for them. They were cheap; these were not new releases, ...
1
vote
1answer
28 views

What does “an appeal, a right violated and invoked” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "an appeal, a right violated and invoked" means in the following sentences: I stood. ‘I need to go,’ I said, knowing it was true. Your face, your limbs – it was as ...
-2
votes
1answer
36 views

What does “I’d lost” mean in this context? [closed]

I would like to know what "I’d lost you" means in the following sentences: We walked back to the veranda, and I couldn’t look at you, only at the ground, not sure what had just happened. I ...
0
votes
1answer
19 views

What does “the same faces” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "the same faces" means in the following sentences: That afternoon Hania said she was preparing a surprise for us; after lunch she and Agata went out with two empty ...
4
votes
0answers
16 views

How did Culler define the relationship between literary studies and cultural studies after ‘Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction’?

Yesterday, EJoshuaS - Reinstate Monica asked Is Jonathan Culler saying that literary theory is effectively the same subject as cultural studies? The question was based on the second edition of Culler'...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

What does “the gigantic gates and lines of soldiers that protected the castle that was the Soviet embassy” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "the gigantic gates and lines of soldiers that protected the castle that was the Soviet embassy" means in the following sentences: We whizzed off, speeding ...
1
vote
1answer
12 views

What does “And it won’t be weird with Hania? Coming on to” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "And it won’t be weird with Hania? Coming on to you?" means in the following sentences: You stopped and looked at me with a consolatory smile. ‘Don’t worry, this ...
1
vote
1answer
16 views

What does “look a little … something.” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "You look a little … something." means in the following sentences: You and Maksio reached her just as the song came to an end, a storm of cheers and ...
3
votes
2answers
301 views

What does “I wished it could be us out there.” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "I wished it could be us out there." means in the following sentences: ‘Goodness,’ sighed Karolina, rolling her eyes, ‘doesn’t he tell you anything? Maksio and ...
0
votes
1answer
14 views

What does “quick, light beats prepared the room, gathered our attention, ecstatic, simple and single-minded.” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "At once a string of quick, light beats prepared the room, gathered our attention, ecstatic, simple and single-minded." means in the following sentences: And then ...
0
votes
1answer
18 views

What does “I pressed her against me” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "I pressed her against me" means in the following sentences: We had another drink and had just started to move to the music when an arm snaked itself around my ...
0
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0answers
17 views

Charles Bukowski's poem about waking up every morning and trying to be a poet/writer

I tried to google it, I searched in libraries and can't find it. But 15 years ago I read a poem by Charles Bukowski where he describes how every morning he wakes up and tries to be a poet/writer. Any ...
4
votes
0answers
18 views

Was Lapine ever developed beyond the small glossary in Watership Down?

One of the interesting features of Richard Adams's novel Watership Down is his invented language "Lapine" spoken by rabbits in the story. Mostly, of course, the rabbits are shown speaking in ...
2
votes
0answers
36 views

In 'Under The Net', what is the significance of the Riverside Miming Theatre?

Could you give me some examples to explain what is the reason for the significance of the Riverside Miming Theatre for Jake, in Iris Murdoch's novel Under the Net?
5
votes
2answers
93 views

Symbolism and romanticism as literary movements

I'm trying to understand the difference between Symbolism and Romanticism as literary movements. As I understand it, the symbolists explicitly wanted to distance themselves from the romantics. But if ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

Does “bottles” refer to alcoholic drinks in this passage?

I would like to know what "bottles" means in the following sentences: We followed him through a wood-panelled corridor into a large room filled with smoke and people. Music blasted ...
2
votes
1answer
20 views

What does “I need to check on somebody” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "I need to check on somebody." means in the following sentences: We followed him through a wood-panelled corridor into a large room filled with smoke and people. ...
1
vote
1answer
19 views

In this passage from Swimming in the Dark, what does “arched back defined” mean?

I would like to know what "Your arched back defined" means in the following sentences: Afterwards you got up and switched on the radio, sitting on your haunches, turning the tune button. ...
0
votes
1answer
11 views

In this passage from “Swimming in the Dark”, does “came through to the corridor with me” mean they came out through the room to the corridor?

I would like to know what "came through to the corridor with me" means in the following sentences: ‘No, thank you,’ you said, waiting for her to stop. ‘I won’t trouble you for long. Ludwik ...
0
votes
1answer
14 views

Does “pact you’ve made with yourself” refer to a concession or agreement in this passage?

I would like to know what "pact you’ve made with yourself" means in the following sentences: ‘Did you hear?’ he said with his smoker’s voice, almost immediately after picking up the phone. ‘...
1
vote
1answer
16 views

What does “searching the flats and offices, returning to interrogate the man and the woman and to take down their details” mean here?

I would like to know what "searching the flats and offices, returning to interrogate the man and the woman and to take down their details" means in the following sentences: There was a ...
1
vote
1answer
13 views

What does “I heard her shoving the brooms up against it, heard running in other parts of the office…” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "I heard her shoving the brooms up against it, heard running in other parts of the office, and then the sound of her heels on the wooden floor of the corridor." ...
1
vote
1answer
22 views

What does “It made me think that throughout my life, up to this point, everything I’d done had felt either irrelevant or replaceable.” mean here?

I would like to know what "It made me think that throughout my life, up to this point, everything I’d done had felt either irrelevant or replaceable." means in the following sentences: I ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

What does “Behind it lay the nuns’ convent, their cloister with its orchards and grazing cows…” mean here?

I would like to know what "Behind it lay the nuns’ convent, their cloister with its orchards and grazing cows, and new residential blocks towering just above." means in the following ...
0
votes
1answer
23 views

Does “her bike” refer to a motorcycle or a bicycle in this passage?

I would like to know what "her bike" means in the following sentences: I was very young; Father had just left us and Mother was so distraught I was afraid she’d die from grief. She stayed ...
0
votes
0answers
13 views

What does “tucked in below the ramparts of the faculty grounds” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "tucked in below the ramparts of the faculty grounds" means in the following sentences: During those weeks, you and I would go to the university pool every now and ...
-1
votes
1answer
30 views

What does “mind our own business” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "mind our own business" means in the following sentences: ‘There’s no law against what we’re doing.’ ‘I know that.’ Your voice softened. ‘But we need to act as if ...
1
vote
1answer
16 views

Does “a satisfaction in the forbidden, a challenge” mean a satisfaction in doing what is forbidden?

I would like to know what "a satisfaction in the forbidden, a challenge" means in the following sentences: I walked home slowly. The air was suffocating. The sky was grey, and sticky wind ...
0
votes
1answer
18 views

In this passage from “Swimming in the Dark”, does “a sort of thought-through whisper” mean a pondered-upon whisper?

I would like to know what "a sort of thought-through whisper" means in the following sentences: ‘That’s the right attitude.’ He leaned forward and put his chunky arms on the desk, his ...
2
votes
1answer
14 views

What does “referred from the centre for student accommodation” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "referred from the centre for student accommodation" means in the following sentences: When I arrived in the flat, it seemed smaller to me than before. The kitchen ...
4
votes
1answer
26 views

Bother to report errors in books to authors?

Recently I read a couple of books with either of the following mistakes: Spelling Phrasing Scientific errors in equations Word duplications Other typography errors: formatting, missing colors, etc. ...
1
vote
1answer
16 views

“hung in parchment folds”

After a long climb, she emerged on a wooded hill, above a Greek-style amphitheater. She was surrounded by golden grasses, whose feathery seeds were borne on the wind. Eucalyptus fronds, giving off ...
7
votes
3answers
313 views

Is Jonathan Culler saying that literary theory is effectively the same subject as cultural studies?

In chapter 3 of the second edition of Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction, we find the following paragraph: Theory has enormously enriched and invigorated the study of literary works, but... ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

Are some works of literature almost impossible to translate correctly?

I often read that some things are very difficult to translate without losing significant meaning. For instance, many Muslims say that the Koran can be understood only in the original Arabic: ...
4
votes
1answer
293 views

Who is Mary in Black Beauty?

In chapter 43 of Anna Sewell's Black Beauty, the lady at the hospital mentions "Mary" several times. It seems like Mary is Jerry's wife: “Well, Barker,” she said, “it would be a great pity ...
5
votes
1answer
43 views

How could the cane be used instead of tobacco in cigarettes in the late 1800s?

In "In the Midst of Alarms" (1894) by Robert Barr, the author is describing a young boy in a Canadian village, who was smoking: Young Hiram’s devotion to the Goddess Nicotine had never ...

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