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New Books: Westerns: A Women’s History by Victoria Lamont

westernsWesterns: A Women’s History

Victoria Lamont

Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2016

At every turn in the development of what we now know as the western, women writers have been instrumental in its formation. Yet the myth that the western is male-authored persists. Westerns: A Women’s History debunks this myth once and for all by recovering the women writers of popular westerns who were active during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries when the western genre as we now know it emerged.,677181.aspx


New Books: Dickinson in Her Own Time Editors: Jane Donahue Eberwein, Stephanie Farrar, and Cristanne Miller

Dickinson in Her Own Time Eberwein_web.preview Editors: Jane Donahue Eberwein, Stephanie Farrar, and Cristanne Miller
University of Iowa Press, 2016

Featuring both well-known documents and material printed or collected here for the first time, this book offers a broad range of writings that convey impressions of Dickinson in her own time and for the first decades following the publication of her poems. It all begins with her school days and continues to the centennial of her birth in 1930.

In addition, promotional items, reviews, and correspondence relating to early publications are included, as well as some later documents that reveal the changing assessments of Dickinson’s poetry in response to evolving critical standards. These documents provide evidence that counters many popular conceptions of her life and reception, such as the belief that the writer best known for poems focused on loss, death, and immortality was herself a morose soul. In fact, those who knew her found her humorous, playful, and interested in other people.

New Books: A History of Nineteenth-Century American Women’s Poetry. Edited by Jennifer Putzi and Alexandra Socarides

A History of Nineteenth-Century American Women’s Poetry

Edited by Jennifer Putzi and Alexandra Socarides

Cambridge University Press, 2016 (Cover art not available)

A History of Nineteenth-Century American Women’s Poetry is the first book to construct a coherent history of the field and focus entirely on women’s poetry of the period. With contributions from some of the most prominent scholars of nineteenth-century American literature, it explores a wide variety of authors, texts, and methodological approaches. Organized into three chronological sections, the essays examine multiple genres of poetry, consider poems circulated in various manuscript and print venues, and propose alternative ways of narrating literary history. From these essays, a rich story emerges about a diverse poetics that was once immensely popular but has since been forgotten. This History confirms that the field has advanced far beyond the recovery of select individual poets. It will be an invaluable resource for students, teachers, and critics of both the literature and the history of this era.

New Books: Parental Incarceration: Personal Accounts and Developmental Impact. Denise Johnston and Megan Sullivan, eds.

parentalParental Incarceration: Personal Accounts and Developmental Impact

Denise Johnston and Megan Sullivan, eds.
New York and London: Routledge, 2016.

Parental Incarceration makes available personal stories by adults who have had the childhood experience of parental incarceration. These stories, as well as the most updated information on research practice, help readers better understand the complex circumstances that influence these children’s health and development, as well as their high risk for intergenerational crime and incarceration.

New Books: Critical Insights: Louisa May Alcott. Ed. Greg Eiselein and Anne Phillips

ci_alcottCritical Insights: Louisa May Alcott
Ed. Greg Eiselein and Anne Phillips

Salem Press, 2016

A great starting point for students seeking an introduction to Louisa May Alcott and the critical discussions surrounding her work.

A 19th century American novelist of the transcendentalist school, Louisa May Alcott is most renowned for Little Women, a coming-of-age children’s tale still popular with readers of all ages today. Essays in this volume take a closer look at Alcott, her beliefs, and her work in Little Women and its two sequels, Little Men and Jo’s Boys.

Some essays in this title focus on indisputably famous books but offer fresh insights about them, while others offer fresh and tantalizing perspectives on lesser-known aspects of Alcott’s career. Whatever reader’s familiarity with Alcott’s life and works, the essays offer diverse and original approaches to literary study, breadth, and depth of literary and cultural history, and an invitation to take part in the ongoing conversation. These essays aim to illuminate not only the specific Alcott texts addressed here but also her entire body of work.

New Books: Becoming Sui Sin Far: Early Fiction, Journalism, and Travel Writing by Edith Maude Eaton. Ed. Mary Chapman

suisinfarBecoming Sui Sin Far: Early Fiction, Journalism, and Travel Writing by Edith Maude Eaton

Ed. Mary Chapman 

The Press pre-ordering price (20% off $34.95) is in Canadian dollars and hence an additional 25% off the US price!

Becoming Sui Sin Far collects and contextualizes seventy of Eaton’s early works, most of which have not been republished since they first appeared in turn-of-the-century periodicals. These works of fiction and journalism, in diverse styles and from a variety of perspectives, document Eaton’s early career as a short story writer, “stunt-girl” journalist, ethnographer, political commentator, and travel writer. Showcasing her playful humour, savage wit, and deep sympathy, the texts included in this volume assert a significant place for Eaton in North American literary history.

New Books: The Redemption of Narrative: Terry Tempest Williams and Her Vision of the West by Jan Whitt

redemptionThe Redemption of Narrative: Terry Tempest Williams and Her Vision of the West 

Jan Whitt

Mercer University Press, 2016

Author and environmental activist Terry Tempest Williams argues that a lack of connection to the land is the direct result of our failure to care intimately about one another.  A Mormon and a believer in the power of women, an activist and a solitary writer, a student of science and a woman of faith, Williams celebrates paradox and lives both on the page and in the world. The first monograph to explore Williams’s impressive and expanding literary canon, The Redemption of Narrative is divided into two sections. Part 1 compares Williams and poet and essayist Thomas Stearns Eliot, who share a personal belief system and a longing to find order and stability through language. Part 2 explores two of the literary communities to which Williams belongs, first, writers of creative nonfiction and literary journalism, and second, animal activists who advocate both for living things and for the planet that sustains them. The complex symbolic systems that heighten one’s empathy with wildlife and encourage activism on behalf of the earth are at the heart of the study, which addresses recurring themes in Williams’s work, including allegory, regionalism, reconciliation, spirituality, and a search for meaning.