Categories for Literature

1929? written in large font

Literature, Moderns

The Greatest Year in American Literature

Was 1929 the greatest year in American literature?  I think so.  1850-1855 had a run that’s still unmatched: The Scarlet Letter (1850), Moby-Dick (1851), Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852), Walden (1854), and… Read More

the controversial novel

Literature, Moderns

The Story Behind the First Edition of Ulysses by James Joyce

The first edition of perhaps the greatest English book of the 20th century was published by a bookstore, in Paris, which had never printed a book before, and never would… Read More

I celebrate myself

19th Century, Literature

The Story: Walt Whitman’s First Edition Leaves of Grass

One of the world’s most important books of poetry may never have been published if the poet had not been a printer himself. I speak of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass,… Read More

The adventures of huckleberry finn

19th Century, Literature

Mark Twain’s Controversial Masterpiece

Mark Twain is one of America’s greatest writers, and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is his defining novel, popular and controversial from the time of its publication in 1885 to this… Read More