Category Archives: Twentieth-Century Literature

Learning and Connecting with Lili Elbe

By | November 18, 2020

Guest post by Sabine Meyer Sometimes, someone that has been incredibly important to you, that has penetrated your very way of thinking and being becomes an indispensable thread of your own fabric, sneaking back into your life, again and again, reminding you of the role they play in your never-ending evolution. To me, Lili Ilse… Read More »

Writing and Editing The Tough Alchemy of Ben Okri

By | September 29, 2020

Guest post by Rosemary Alice Gray The publication of my monograph entitled, The Tough Alchemy of Ben Okri: The writer as conceptual artist fell about a week before my 80th birthday, auspiciously 20 August 2020. Since I discovered the works of Nigerian-born Londoner, Ben Okri (OBE), who has invested his lifeblood at the rock face of… Read More »

Preparing to Explore Weird Fiction in Lovecraft Country

By | August 13, 2020

Based on a novel by the same name, Lovecraft Country is a drama-horror series set to premiere on HBO this weekend. The story will take you back to the 1950s as you follow Atticus Black (Jonathan Majors), his friend Letitia (Jurnee Smollett-Bell), and his Uncle George (Courtney B. Vance) through Jim Crow America in search of Atticus’s missing father (Michael Kenneth Williams). But as the characters embark on an unexpected road trip, they encounter a… Read More »

Samuel Beckett and the Politics of Closed Space

By | June 4, 2020

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about confinement.

How many steps from my desk to the fridge? (seven) How many from the fridge to the bathroom? (twelve) How many times per day do I track this route?

In October 1954, Samuel Beckett too was thinking of confinement. He was reading a letter from German prisoner Karl-Franz Lembke, who had translated, rehearsed and staged Beckett’s debut play, Waiting for Godot, behind bars. Beckett was clearly moved, as we can see in his response:

The Unbearable Lightness of Anti-Fascism

By | February 10, 2020

Guest post by Tom Kuhn Bertolt Brecht was born on February 10, 1898. To celebrate the 122nd anniversary of his birth, Tom Kuhn explores a side of his work that is often less appreciated. The most recent volume in the Bloomsbury Methuen Drama Brecht list may come as a surprise. Bertolt Brecht’s Refugee Conversations is… Read More »

Happy birthday, Flannery O’Connor!

By | March 25, 2019

Guest post by Jordan Cofer This March 25th marks Flannery O’Connor’s 94th birthday and if you’re near Savannah, Georgia, Flannery O’Connor’s birth place, you could join the Flannery O’Connor enthusiasts who line up each year in Lafayette Square for the Annual Flannery O’Connor Birthday Parade. They dress up as their favorite O’Connor characters and take… Read More »

Happy birthday, Bertolt Brecht!

By | February 10, 2019

Bertolt Brecht was born on February 10, 1898. To celebrate the 121st anniversary of his birth, Tom Kuhn explores some of his unfinished works. On Brecht’s birthday let’s remember how contentious, how provocative and just how contemporary his writings are! Most people know him above all as the author of The Threepenny Opera, Mother Courage… Read More »

Classical Receptions in Twentieth-Century Writing

By | February 6, 2019

Guest post by Laura Jansen The idea for a series on Classical Receptions in Twentieth-Century Writing (CRTW) first came into being in 2015. Early that year, I was intrigued when Alice Wright from Bloomsbury Publishing asked me if I would like to direct a monograph series which combined my interests in modernist classicisms with Reception… Read More »

The Biographical Novel and the Creative Art of Contemporary Living

By | November 6, 2018

Guest post by Michael Lackey Because Kevin Barry’s biographical novel Beatlebone is about John Lennon, one could wrongly assume that it provides an accurate picture of the Beatles’ lead singer. But what readers actually get is Barry’s vision of life and art, and he merely uses Lennon in order to achieve his artistic goal. As… Read More »

Happy birthday, H.P. Lovecraft!

By | August 20, 2018

H.P. Lovecraft was born on August 20, 1890. To celebrate the 128th anniversary of his birth, Stephen Shapiro and Philip Barnard reflect on the legacy of his often controversial works. Should one feel embarrassed about reading H.P. Lovecraft’s weird fiction? Or worse, enjoying it? Or even worse, writing commentary on it? After decades of being categorized… Read More »