The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0804151342
Category: Fiction
Page: 416
View: 2132

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Presenting the stories of Zeus and Europa, Theseus and Ariadne, the birth of Athens and the fall of Troy, in all their variants, Calasso also uncovers the distant origins of secrets and tragedy, virginity, and rape. "A perfect work like no other. (Calasso) has re-created . . . the morning of our world."--Gore Vidal. 15 engravings.

The Marriage Of Cadmus And Harmony


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1446433064
Category: Fiction
Page: 416
View: 1535

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THE MARRIAGE OF CADMUS AND HARMONY is a book without any modern parallel. Forming an active link in a chain that reaches back through Ovid's METAMORPHOSES directly to Homer, Roberto Calasso's re-exploration of the fantastic fables and mysteries we may only think we know explodes the entire world of Greek mythology, pieces it back together, and presents it to us in a new, and astonishing, and utterly contempory way.

The Ruin of Kasch


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374712832
Category: History
Page: 432
View: 1944

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A brilliant new translation of a classic work on violence and revolution as seen through mythology and art The Ruin of Kasch takes up two subjects—“the first is Talleyrand, and the second is everything else,” wrote Italo Calvino when the book first appeared in 1983. Hailed as one of those rare books that persuade us to see our entire civilization in a new light, its guide is the French statesman Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand, who knew the secrets of the ancien régime and all that came after, and was able to adapt the notion of “legitimacy” to the modern age. Roberto Calasso follows him through a vast gallery of scenes set immediately before and after the French Revolution, making occasional forays backward and forward in time, from Vedic India to the porticoes of the Palais-Royal and to the killing fields of Pol Pot, with appearances by Goethe and Marie Antoinette, Napoleon and Marx, Walter Benjamin and Chateaubriand. At the center stands the story of the ruin of Kasch, a legendary kingdom based on the ritual killing of the king and emblematic of the ruin of ancient and modern regimes. Offered here in a new translation by Richard Dixon, The Ruin of Kasch is, as John Banville wrote, “a great fat jewel-box of a book, gleaming with obscure treasures.”

Literature and the Gods


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307537730
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 224
View: 3483

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Brilliant, inspired, and gloriously erudite, Literature and the Gods is the culmination of Roberto Calasso’s lifelong study of the gods in the human imagination. By uncovering the divine whisper that lies behind the best poetry and prose from across the centuries, Calasso gives us a renewed sense of the mystery and enchantment of great literature. From the banishment of the classical divinities during the Age of Reason to their emancipation by the Romantics and their place in the literature of our own time, the history of the gods can also be read as a ciphered and splendid history of literary inspiration. Rewriting that story, Calasso carves out a sacred space for literature where the presence of the gods is discernible. His inquiry into the nature of “absolute literature” transports us to the realms of Dionysus and Orpheus, Baudelaire and Mallarmé, and prompts a lucid and impassioned defense of poetic form, even when apparently severed from any social function. Lyrical and assured, Literature and the Gods is an intensely engaging work of literary affirmation that deserves to be read alongside the masterpieces it celebrates. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Ka


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1446419975
Category: Fiction
Page: 464
View: 1435

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It is the essence of Roberto Calasso's particular genius to have evolved a unique way of reconstructing the imaginative heart of some of the world's greatest cultures. In The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony it was the 'Greekness' of classical culture; in Ka he gives us the 'Indianness' of the mind of India, but in an Indian way. He does not describe or explain this mental world: he regenerates it through its stories and customs. Who is Ka? And who is the immense eagle who asks this question, filling the sky, an elephant and a giant turtle in his claws? How can he be the child of woman? Who are these tiny folk he eats? The first impact of Ka is one of tremendous strangeness, bewilderment, disorientation. Slowly, however, the strange becomes familiar and - as Ka folds and enfolds the world of the Deva and the Seven Seers, of Siva, Brahma and Visnu, the wars of the Mahabharata, and finally the advent of the Buddha - we are amazed at our own recognition. These stories lie so close to the grain of our own experience that they confirm, or for the first time articulate, our own deepest perceptions about our condition.

Ardor


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141971819
Category: Social Science
Page: 432
View: 7610

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In this revelatory volume, Roberto Calasso, whom the Paris Review has called 'a literary institution', explores the ancient texts known as the Vedas. Little is known about the Vedic people who lived more than three thousand years ago in northern India: they left behind almost no objects, images, ruins. They created no empires. Even the hallucinogenic plant, the soma, which appears at the centre of some of their rituals, has not been identified with any certainty. Only a 'Parthenon of words' remains: verses and formulations suggesting a daring understanding of life. 'If the Vedic people had been asked why they did not build cities,' writes Calasso, 'they could have replied: we did not seek power, but rapture.' This is the ardor of the Vedic world, a burning intensity that is always present, both in the mind and in the cosmos. With his signature erudition and profound sense of the past, Calasso explores the enigmatic web of ritual and myth that define the Vedas. Often at odds with modern thought, he shows how these texts illuminate the nature of consciousness more than neuroscientists have been able to offer us up to now. Following the 'hundred paths' of the Satapatha Brahmana, an impressive exegesis of Vedic ritual, Ardor indicates that it may be possible to reach what is closest by passing through that which is most remote, as 'the whole of Vedic India was an attempt to think further'.

The Art of the Publisher


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374711836
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines
Page: 160
View: 8506

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An interior look at Roberto Calasso's work as a publisher and his reflections on the art of book publishing In this fascinating memoir, the author and publisher Roberto Calasso meditates on the art of book publishing. Recalling the beginnings of Adelphi in the 1960s, he touches on the Italian house's defining qualities, including the considerations involved in designing the successful Biblioteca series and the strategy for publishing a wide range of authors of high literary quality, as well as the historic critical edition of the works of Nietzsche. With his signature erudition and polemical flair, Calasso transcends Adelphi to look at the publishing industry as a whole, from the essential importance of graphics, jackets, and cover flaps to the consequences of universal digitization. And he outlines what he describes as the "most hazardous and ambitious" profile of what a publishing house can be: a book comprising many books, a form in which "all the books published by a certain publisher could be seen as links in a single chain"—a conception akin to that of other twentieth-century publishers, from Giulio Einaudi to Roger Straus, of whom the book offers brief portraits. An essential book for writers, readers, and editors, The Art of the Publisher is a tribute to the elusive yet profoundly relevant art of making books.

The Forty-Nine Steps


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1446414876
Category: Literary Collections
Page: 304
View: 736

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In books lauded as brilliant, exhilarating and profound, Roberto Calasso has revealed the unexpected intersections of ancient and modern through topics ranging from Greek and Indian mythology to what a legendary African kingdom can tell us about the French Revolution. In this first translation of his most important essays, Calasso brings his powerful intellect and elegant prose style to bear on the essential thinkers of our time, providing a sweeping analysis of the current state of Western culture.'Forty-nine steps' refers to the Talmudic doctrine that there are forty-nine steps to meaning in every passage of the Torah. Employing this interpretative approach, Calasso offers a 'secret history' of European literature and philosophy in the wake of Nietzsche, Marx and Freud. Calasso analyses how figures ranging from Gustav Flaubert, Gottfried Benn, Karl Kraus and Martin Heidegger to Walter Benjamin, Franz Kafka, Bertolt Brecht and Theodor Adorno have contributed to, or been emblematic of, the current state of Western thought. This book's theme, writ large, is the power of the fable - specifically, its persistence in art and literature despite its exclusion from orthodox philosophy. In its breadth and the nature of its concerns, The Forty-nine Steps is a philosophical and literary twin to the widely praised Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony. Combining erudition with engaging prose and original insights, Calasso contributes a daring new interpretation of some of the most challenging writers of the past 150 years.

Europa


Author: Tim Parks
Publisher: Arcade Publishing
ISBN: 9781559704441
Category: Fiction
Page: 261
View: 6720

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A finalist for the Booker Prize, this ferociously comic tale of love gone sour is the finest novel to date from the author of the national bestsellers, "An Italian Education" and "Italian Neighbors".

K.


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 1400076129
Category: Literary Criticism
Page: 327
View: 2839

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The author of The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony presents an original interpretation of the work of Franz Kafka in a series of essays that looks at the meaning of Kafka's stories and what they reveal about the enigmatic author himself. Reprint.

Tiepolo Pink


Author: Roberto Calasso
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1409076520
Category: Art
Page: 304
View: 7767

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The eighteenth-century Venetian painter Giambattista Tiepolo spent his life executing commissions in churches, palaces, and villas, often covering vast ceilings like those at the Würzburg Residenz in Germany and the Royal Palace in Madrid with frescoes that are among the glories of Western art. The life of an epoch swirled around him - but though his contemporaries appreciated and admired him, they failed to understand him. Few have even attempted to tackle Tiepolo's series of thirty-three bizarre and haunting etchings, the Capricci and the Scherzi, but Roberto Calasso rises to the challenge, interpreting these etchings as chapters in a dark narrative that contains the secret of Tiepolo's art. Blooming ephebes, female satyrs, Oriental sages, owls, snakes: we will find them all, including Punchinello and Death, within the pages of this book, along with Venus, Time, Moses, numerous angels, Cleopatra and Beatrice of Burgundy - a motley, gypsyish company always on the go. Calasso makes clear that Tiepolo was more than a dazzling intermezzo in the history of painting. Rather, he represented a particular way of meeting the challenge of form: endowed with a fluid, seemingly effortless style, Tiepolo was the last incarnation of that peculiar Italian virtue sprezzatura, the art of not seeming artful.

La Folie Baudelaire


Author: Roberto Calasso,Alastair McEwen
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 0374183341
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 337
View: 8637

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Looks at the life, influence, and work of the French writer and founder of modernism.

Old School


Author: Tobias Wolff
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9781400095254
Category: Fiction
Page: 208
View: 4746

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The protagonist of Tobias Wolff’s shrewdly—and at times devastatingly—observed first novel is a boy at an elite prep school in 1960. He is an outsider who has learned to mimic the negligent manner of his more privileged classmates. Like many of them, he wants more than anything on earth to become a writer. But to do that he must first learn to tell the truth about himself. The agency of revelation is the school literary contest, whose winner will be awarded an audience with the most legendary writer of his time. As the fever of competition infects the boy and his classmates, fraying alliances, exposing weaknesses, Old School explores the ensuing deceptions and betrayals with an unblinking eye and a bottomless store of empathy. The result is further evidence that Wolff is an authentic American master. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Cross Channel


Author: Julian Barnes
Publisher: Vintage Canada
ISBN: 0307367576
Category: Fiction
Page: N.A
View: 9747

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Combining the intellectual audacity of A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters with the francophilia of the acclaimed Flaubert's Parrot, Julian Barnes explores the English experience of France over the centuries with dazzling wit and sophistication. This is Barnes's first collection of stories. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Bone People

A Novel
Author: Keri Hulme
Publisher: LSU Press
ISBN: 9780807130728
Category: Fiction
Page: 450
View: 3779

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Set in the harsh environment of the South Island beaches of New Zealand, this masterful story brings together three singular people in a trinity that reflects their country's varied heritage. Winner of the 1985 Booker-McConnell prize for fiction.

Summer

A Novel
Author: Edith Wharton
Publisher: Penguin Classics
ISBN: N.A
Category: Fiction
Page: 290
View: 4288

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SINCE her reinstatement in Miss Hatchard's favour Charity had not dared to curtail by a moment her hours of attendance at the library. She even made a point of arriving before the time, and showed a laudable indignation when the youngest Targatt girl, who had been engaged to help in the cleaning and rearranging of the books, came trailing in late and neglected her task to peer through the window at the Sollas boy.

Uncommon Arrangements

Seven Marriages
Author: Katie Roiphe
Publisher: Dial Press Trade Paperbacks
ISBN: 0385339380
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 343
View: 9541

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A cultural critic and author of Still She Haunts Me examines seven unconventional marriages among members of England's literary circles between 1910 and 1939--including Jane and H. G. Wells, Vera Brittain and George Gordon Catlin, and Vanessa and Clive Bell--examining crises that occurred in each marriage and how they were or were not resolved. Reprint. 45,000 first printing.

The Texture of Memory

Holocaust Memorials and Meaning
Author: James Edward Young
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 9780300059915
Category: History
Page: 398
View: 1736

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Examines Holcaust monuments and museums in Europe, Israel, and America, exploring how every nation remembers the Holocaust according to its own tradtions, ideals, and experiences, and how these memorials reflect their place...

The Book of Ruth


Author: Jane Hamilton
Publisher: HMH
ISBN: 0547523599
Category: Fiction
Page: 336
View: 8959

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PEN/Hemingway Award Winner: An “enthralling” novel of a woman trapped within a tragically dysfunctional family (Entertainment Weekly). From the New York Times–bestselling author of The Excellent Lombards and A Map of the World, this is “an extraordinary story of a family’s disintegration [that] will be compared to Jane Smiley’s A Thousand Acres” (People). It follows Ruth Grey, a young woman in a tiny Illinois farm town, who has lost her father to World War II, and constantly faces her unhappy mother’s wrath—when she isn’t being ignored in favor of her math-prodigy brother. As Ruth navigates her lonely life, she strives to find happiness and pleasure where she can, but the world may conspire to defeat her. “A sly and wistful, if harrowing, human comedy . . . [An] original voice in fiction and one well worth listening to.” —The Boston Sunday Globe “Unforgettably, beat by beat, Hamilton maps the best and worst of the human heart and all the mysterious, uncharted country in between.” —Kirkus Reviews “Hamilton’s story builds to a shocking crescendo. Her small-town characters are as appealingly offbeat and brushed with grace as any found in Alice Hoffman’s or Anne Tyler’s novels.” —Glamour