Love Sex Death Words – press release
Love Sex Death Words
Surprising Tales from a Year in Literature
John Sutherland & Stephen Fender
PUBLICATION DATE: 7 October 2010
£20 ● Hardback ● ISBN 978-184831-164-0
4 October (1535) Printing of the Coverdale Bible is finished, the first complete Bible to be published in English
5 October (1936) Steinbeck begins a series of articles in a San Francisco paper – which will change his life. These pieces of investigative journalism end up becoming the Grapes of Wrath
6 October (1983) William Golding becomes the 1983 Nobel Laureate, despite the attempted blackballing by one of the judges for being ‘too nice’.
7 October (1995) Allan Ginsberg first reads HOWL aloud at the Six Gallery, San Francisco. The Beat Generation comes of age.
8 October (2009) Herta Müller wins the Nobel – no small feat since she was the daughter of a Waffen-SS soldier. Her speech is like no other Nobel lecture on record revolving around the big things the little thing mean.
Love, sex, death, boredom, ecstasy, existential angst, political upheaval – this is life presented in a unique way. LOVE SEX DEATH WORDS is a truly absorbing readers’ companion to the most inspiring, enlightening, surprising and curious artefacts that literature has to offer and a rich and varied exploration of the human condition across the centuries.
Acclaimed literary critics John Sutherland and Stephen Fender present a wealth of stories, anecdotes, and little known facts from literature’s past and present –arranged by the days of the year. From 1 January through to 31 December, each date supplies a starting point from which to explore a deep history of literary happenings. Find out why Alexander Pushkin fought a dual and died; explore the dark past of John Sadlier, the original Mr. Merdle in Little Dorrit; and read the unknown tale of Nietzsche’s typewriting course.
Not just a chronicle of literary dates, LOVE SEX DEATH WORDS offers fascinating essays on all aspects of literature – from the social, economic and political context of its production and reception, to literature’s inner workings and the subtle ways in which it weaves together images and formal patterns to suggest meanings below the surface.
So through what arrangement of what words did Thomas Paine’s pamphlet ‘Common Sense’ change the world when it was published on January 10, 1776? What modernist novel grew out of its author’s first date with the woman who would become his wife on June 16, 1904, and what made it such an experiment in form? How did the Anglo-Saxon account of the Battle of Malden on August 10, 991 contribute to the Dunkirk Spirit? What connects the Harry Potter mania with the statistics for children rushed to the nation’s A&E departments? What moving ad-lib monologue spoken by an actor-novelist in the movie ‘Jaws’ was prompted by the sinking of the USS Indianapolis on July 29, 1945? These and 360 other questions are posed and answered in this book.
Fact and fiction are interwoven and time collapsed in this sumptuous voyage through the highs and lows of literature’s bejewelled past. The events covered during the week of the book’s release include the printing of the first complete Bible in English and William Golding’s reception of the Nobel Prize in Literature two days (and 448 years) later.
Written by two friends and colleagues with an unbounded interest in literature and over 80 years’ experience of teaching the subject across national and linguistic barriers, LOVE SEX DEATH WORDS offers a new way to understand and enjoy the written word.
Packed full of 365 dazzling literary goldmines, LOVE SEX DEATH WORDS is a bibliophile’s ideal Christmas present. In the same compelling format as 365: Great Stories from History for Every Day of the Year, this latest offering is sure to please literature lovers, history buffs, and trivia enthusiasts alike.
John Sutherland was the Lord Northcliffe Professor of Modern English Literature at UCL and a past Chairman of the Booker Prize panel, and is the author of one of the standard texts on Victorian fiction.
Stephen Fender has taught Literature in the US, in Scotland at the University of Edinburgh, and in England at London and Sussex, where he was head of American Studies from 1985 to 2003.
For more information please contact Najma Finlay, Publicity Director Icon Books email@example.com 020 7700 9962