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A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Dubliners, by James Joyce, is part of theBarnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics:
In the semi-autobiographical Portrait, young Stephen Dedalus yearns to be an artist, but first must struggle against the forces of church, school, and society, which fetter his imagination and stifle his soul. The book's inventive style is apparent from its opening pages, a record of an infant's impressions of the world around himand one of the first examples of the stream of consciousness" technique.
Comprising fifteen stories, Dubliners presents a community of mesmerizing, humorous, and haunting charactersa group portrait. The interactions among them form one long meditation on the human condition, culminating with The Dead," one of Joyce's most graceful compositions centering around a character's epiphany. A carefully woven tapestry of Dublin life at the turn of the last century,Dubliners realizes Joyce's ambition to give his countrymen one good look at themselves."Kevin J. H. Dettmar is Professor of English and Cultural Studies at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He is the author or editor of a half-dozen books on James Joyce, modernist literature, and rock music. He is currently finishing a term as President of the Modernist Studies Association.
A masterpiece of modern fiction, James Joyce's semiautobiographical first novel follows Stephen Dedalus, a sensitive and creative youth who rebels against his family, his education, and his country by committing himself to the artist's life. "I will not serve," vows Dedalus, "that in which I no longer believe..and I will try to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as I can." To Dedalus, the artist is like God-one who "remains within or behind or beyond or above his handiwork, invisible, refined out of existence, indifferent, paring his fingernails." Joyce's rendering of the impressions of childhood broke ground in the use of language. "He took on the almost infinite English language," Jorge Luis Borges once said. "He wrote in a language invented by himself..Joyce brought a new music to English." As a bold literary experiment, this classic has had a huge and lasting influence on the contemporary novel.
Turning a skeptical eye on the idea that Renaissance artists were widely believed to be as utterly admirable as Vasari claimed, this book re-opens the question of why artists were praised and by whom, and specifically why the language of divinity was invoked, a practice the ancients did not license. The epithet "divino" is examined in the context of claims to liberal arts status and to analogy with poets, musicians, and other "uomini famossi." The reputations of Michelangelo and Brunelleschi are compared not only with each other but with those of Dante and Ariosto, of Aretino and of the ubiquitous beloved of the sonnet tradition. Nineteenth-century reformulations of the idea of Renaissance artistic divinity are treated in the epilogue, and twentieth-century treatments of the idea of artistic "ingegno" in an appendix.
This uniquely warm and personal book is more than simply another guide for parents who want their children to study music. The Pleasures of Perils of Raising Young Musicians tells the real-life stories of today's musical children, interlaced with comparative stories from the childhoods of famous musicians. Woven throughout is the author's personal narrative about the joys and frustrations of raising her own son Jonathan, a flutist. The book reviews current research about the value of a classical music education in building character, intellect, discipline, and success, no matter what field a child pursues. As a parent, you will feel you are not alone in being perplexed about what choices to make. With richly detailed and sometimes surprising information about each orchestral instrument, Ms. Siteman assists parents who must choose which instrument is a good "fit" for their child's body type, temperament, and social needs. The Pleasures and Perils of Raising Young Musicians illuminates the joys, frustrations, and rewards of classical music education for parents who desperately need solid guidance and no-nonsense information.
An excellent introduction to the often-difficult work of James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man also introduces the reader to Joyce's literary alter-ego, Stephen Dedalus.
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