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British Literature Recommended Reading
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This library research guide provides an introduction to library resources related to British Literature courses.
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British Writers Biographies and Resources
British Literature Recommended Reading
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George Orwell; Erich Fromm (Afterword by)
Written in 1948, 1984 was George Orwell's chilling prophecy about the future. And while 1984 has come and gone, his dystopian vision of a government that will do anything to control the narrative is timelier than ever... *Nominated as one of America's best-loved novels by PBS's The Great American Read* "The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command." Winston Smith toes the Party line, rewriting history to satisfy the demands of the Ministry of Truth. With each lie he writes, Winston grows to hate the Party that seeks power for its own sake and persecutes those who dare to commit thoughtcrimes. But as he starts to think for himself, Winston can't escape the fact that Big Brother is always watching... A startling and haunting vision of the world, 1984 is so powerful that it is completely convincing from start to finish. No one can deny the influence of this novel, its hold on the imaginations of multiple generations of readers, or the resiliency of its admonitions--a legacy that seems only to grow with the passage of time.
Call Number: PR6029.R8 N49 2015
Publication Date: 1950
On a summer day in 1935, thirteen-year-old Briony Tallis witnesses a moment’s flirtation between her older sister, Cecilia, and Robbie Turner, the son of a servant. But Briony’s incomplete grasp of adult motives and her precocious imagination bring about a crime that will change all their lives, a crime whose repercussionsAtonementfollows through the chaos and carnage of World War II and into the close of the twentieth century.
Call Number: PR6063.C4 A88 2001
Publication Date: 2007
Brave New World
Now more than ever: Aldous Huxley's enduring "masterpiece ... one of the most prophetic dystopian works of the 20th century" (Wall Street Journal) must be read and understood by anyone concerned with preserving the human spirit in the face of our "brave new world" Aldous Huxley's profoundly important classic of world literature, Brave New World is a searching vision of an unequal, technologically-advanced future where humans are genetically bred, socially indoctrinated, and pharmaceutically anesthetized to passively uphold an authoritarian ruling order--all at the cost of our freedom, full humanity, and perhaps also our souls. "A genius [who] who spent his life decrying the onward march of the Machine" (The New Yorker), Huxley was a man of incomparable talents: equally an artist, a spiritual seeker, and one of history's keenest observers of human nature and civilization. Brave New World, his masterpiece, has enthralled and terrified millions of readers, and retains its urgent relevance to this day as both a warning to be heeded as we head into tomorrow and as thought-provoking, satisfying work of literature. Written in the shadow of the rise of fascism during the 1930s, Brave New World likewise speaks to a 21st-century world dominated by mass-entertainment, technology, medicine and pharmaceuticals, the arts of persuasion, and the hidden influence of elites. "Aldous Huxley is the greatest 20th century writer in English." --Chicago Tribune
Call Number: PR6015.U9 B65 2006
Publication Date: 2006
Evelyn Waugh’s portrayal of the trials and tribulations of an aristocratic family and their friend, the narrator Charles Ryder, has been an inspiration to plenty of Oxford applicants, who hope to recreate the evocative Oxfordian scenes described in the early parts of the book – complete with Sebastian’s famous teddy bear, Aloysius. But there’s a lot more to Brideshead Revisited than idyllic Oxford life and decadent scenes involving Champagne and quail eggs. At its heart is the tale of a young man’s struggle with Roman Catholicism and with his own family, but there are many other themes running through it, including the decline of the English stately home after the two World Wars and a longing for the bygone era of the English nobility.
Call Number: PR6045.A97 B7 1946
Publication Date: 1945
The Chronicles of Narnia
C. S. Lewis; Pauline Baynes (Illustrator)
Enjoy The Chronicles of Narnia in its entirety with this paperback box set, containing the mass market editions of C. S. Lewis's classic fantasy series. C. S. Lewis's The Chronicles of Narnia has captivated readers of all ages for over sixty years, enchanting them with fantastical talking creatures, epic battles between good and evil, and magical doorways into new lands. This box set includes all seven titles in The Chronicles of Narnia--The Magician's Nephew; The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe; The Horse and His Boy; Prince Caspian; The Voyage of the Dawn Treader; The Silver Chair; and The Last Battle--with the original black-and-white interior illustrations by Pauline Baynes and cover art by Cliff Nielsen.
Call Number: PZ8.L48 C5 1994
Publication Date: 2002
A rich selection of background and source materials is provided in three areas: Contexts includes probable inspirations for Dracula in the earlier works of James Malcolm Rymer and Emily Gerard. Also included are a discussion of Stoker's working notes for the novel and "Dracula's Guest," the original opening chapter to Dracula. Reviews and Reactions reprints five early reviews of the novel. "Dramatic and Film Variations" focuses on theater and film adaptations of Dracula, two indications of the novel's unwavering appeal. David J. Skal, Gregory A. Waller, and Nina Auerbach offer their varied perspectives. Checklists of both dramatic and film adaptations are included.Criticism collects seven theoretical interpretations of Dracula by Phyllis A. Roth, Carol A. Senf, Franco Moretti, Christopher Craft, Bram Dijsktra, Stephen D. Arata, and Talia Schaffer.A Chronology and a Selected Bibliography are included.
Call Number: PR6037.T617 D7 1997
Publication Date: 1996
Far from the Madding Crowd
Far From the Madding Crowd, published in 1874, is the book that made Hardy famous. Bathsheba Everdene is a prosperous farmer in Hardy's fictional Wessex county whose strong-minded independence and vanity lead to disastrous consequences for her and the three very different men who pursue her: the obsessed farmer William Boldwood, dashing and seductive Sergeant Frank Troy, and the devoted shepherd Gabriel Oak.
Call Number: PR4745 .A1 1991
Publication Date: 1874
The Fellowship of the Ring
J. R. R. Tolkien
The first volume in J.R.R. Tolkien's epic adventure THE LORD OF THE RINGS. In ancient times the Rings of Power were crafted by the Elven-smiths, and Sauron, the Dark Lord, forged the One Ring, filling it with his own power so that he could rule all others. But the One Ring was taken from him, and though he sought it throughout Middle-earth, it remained lost to him. After many ages it fell into the hands of Bilbo Baggins, as told in The Hobbit. In a sleepy village in the Shire, young Frodo Baggins finds himself faced with an immense task, as his elderly cousin Bilbo entrusts the Ring to his care. Frodo must leave his home and make a perilous journey across Middle-earth to the Cracks of Doom, there to destroy the Ring and foil the Dark Lord in his evil purpose.
Call Number: PR6039.O32 A6 T3 2012
Publication Date: 2012
Frankenstein or, the Modern Prometheus
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
The California edition of the Pennyroyal Press Frankenstein unites the dark side of Barry Moser's art with the classic 1818 text of Mary Shelley's tale of moral transfiguration. In a vivid sequence of woodcuts, the reader witnesses the birth of the "monster" as Moser shapes him from darkness and gives him a form simultaneously ghastly in its malice and transfixing in its suffering.
Call Number: PR5397 .F7 1994
Publication Date: 1994
The newly established text is based on all extant materials and is accompanied by several textual essays."Backgrounds" provides readers with an understanding of Great Expectations's inception and internal chronology. A wonderfully rich "Contexts" section collects thirteen pieces, centering on the novel's major themes: the link between author and hero and, relatedly, Victorian notions of gentility, snobbishness, and social mobility; the often brutal training, at home and at school, of children born around 1800; and the central issues of crime and punishment.
Call Number: PR4560 .A1 1999
Publication Date: 1861
Ivanhoe: A Romance
Sir Walter Scott
Lose yourself in a masterpiece of historical fiction. Sir Walter Scott's Ivanhoe explores the plight of early Britain in the aftermath of the Norman conquest. Courageous warrior Wilfred of Ivanhoe, estranged from his family, fights for love and honor. This swashbuckling tale of knights, medieval politics, tournaments, and romantic entanglements offers something for everyone.
Call Number: PR5318 .D3 2004
Publication Date: 1820
An orphan girl's progress from the custody of cruel relatives to an oppressive boarding school culminates in a troubled career as a governess. Jane's first assignment at Thornfield, where the proud and cynical master harbors a scandalous secret, draws readers ever deeper into a compelling exploration of the mysteries of the human heart.
Call Number: PR4167 .J3 2002
Publication Date: 1847
Middlemarch: A Study of Provincial Life
Middlemarch: A Study of Provincial Life is exactly what it claims. Its multiple plots center around the inhabitants of a fictitious Midlands town and their evolving relationships to each other. It is critical of social class, ambition and marriage, and religion. It is commonly considered one of the masterpieces of English writing, and Virginia Woolf described it as "the magnificent book that, with all its imperfections, is one of the few English novels written for grown-up people".
Call Number: PR4662 .A1 1977
Publication Date: 1871
The Moonstone and The Woman in White
In the Moonstone (1868) a fabulous yellow diamond disappears from the Verinders' country house in Yorkshire. Witnesses, suspects, and detectives all take up the story, and their narratives lead toward a melodramtic, unforeseeable conclusion. The Woman in White (1860) is a tale of mystery and mistaken identity told by its various characters in turn. From the moment when a lovely young woman suprises Walter Hartright in moonlit north London, Collins keeps the reader in suspense until the entire mesh of secrets is unwoven.
Call Number: PR 4494 M6 1937
Publication Date: 1868, 1859
Murder on the Orient Express
While en route from Syria to Paris, in the middle of a freezing winter's night, the Orient Express is stopped dead in its tracks by a snowdrift. Passengers awake to find the train still stranded and to discover that a wealthy American has been brutally stabbed to death in his private compartment. Incredibly, that compartment is locked from the inside. With no escape into the wintery landscape the killer must still be on board. Fortunately, the brilliant Belgian inspector Hercule Poirot is also on board, having booked the last available berth.
Call Number: PR6005.H66 M88 2011
Publication Date: 1934
Ford Madox Ford
Call Number: PR6011.O53 P3 1950
Publication Date: 1950
Pride and Prejudice
Pride and Prejudice (1813) was in Austen's lifetime her most popular novel, and it was her personal favorite. Adapted many times to the screen and stage, and the inspiration for numerous imitations, it remains today her most widely read book.
Call Number: PR4034 .P7 2010
Publication Date: 1813
Call Number: PR 6007 U47 R4 1938
Publication Date: 1938
The first book of the Regeneration Trilogy and a Booker Prize nominee. In 1917 Siegfried Sasson, noted poet and decorated war hero, publicly refused to continue serving as a British officer in World War I. His reason: the war was a senseless slaughter. He was officially classified "mentally unsound" and sent to Craiglockhart War Hospital. There a brilliant psychiatrist, Dr. William Rivers, set about restoring Sassoon's "sanity" and sending him back to the trenches. This novel tells what happened as only a novel can. It is a war saga in which not a shot is fired. It is a story of a battle for a man's mind in which only the reader can decide who is the victor, who the vanquished, and who the victim.
Call Number: PR6052.A6488 R4 1991
Publication Date: 2013
Call Number: PR 3401 S8
Publication Date: 1968
William Makepeace Thackeray
"Backgrounds and Contexts" is arranged under three headings.nbsp; "Composition and Publication History" combines modern scholarship with contemporary materials to elucidate the novel's composition and publication history and present different aspects of Thackeray's life and work. "Reception" reprints ten contemporary reviews, both published and unpublished, that suggest the tone of Vanity Fair's initial reception. "Contexts" includes materials relating to governesses, historical novels, the Battle of Waterloo and the military, bankruptcy, regency fashions, and the London landscape, all of which figure prominently in the novel."Criticism" is a collection of nine essays written between 1900 and 1990 that reveal the developing response to Vanity Fair.nbsp; William C. Brownell, David Cecil, G. Armour Craig, John Loofbourow, Peter K. Garrett, Richard Barickman, Susan MacDonald, Myra Stark, Ina Ferris, Catherine Peters, and James Phelan provide varied perspectives.A Chronology and Selected Bibliography are also included.
Call Number: PR5618 .A1 1994
Publication Date: 1994
Bronte's novel defies easy classification. It is certainly a story of love, but just as certainly it is not a "love story". It is a psychological novel, but is so filled with hints of the supernatural and mystical that the reader is unsure of how much control the characters have over their own actions. It may seem to be a study of right and wrong, but is actually a study of good and evil. Above all, it is a novel of power and fierce intensity that has gripped readers for more than 100 years.
Call Number: PR4172 .W7 1995
Publication Date: 1847
A verse translation of the first great narrative poem in the English language that captures the feeling and tone of the original.
Call Number: PR 1583 R43 1991
Publication Date: c. 1025
The Canterbury Tales
This is the first edition of The Canterbury Tales that presents Chaucer's poem word for word in modern spelling. It retains the charm of Chaucer's language while eliminating the obstacle of archaic spelling. This text is eminently more readable and accessible, and should encourage rather than deter students to read and appreciate Chaucer.
Call Number: PR1872 .H53 1964
Publication Date: 1478
The Collected Works of W. B. Yeats
W.B. Yeats; Richard J. Finneran (Editor)
The complete, standard edition of the verse of Ireland's greatest lyric poet, including poems from Yeats's plays and essays -- edited by internationally acclaimed Yeats scholar Richard J. Finneran. Providing accurate texts of all of the poems by Yeats published in his lifetime or scheduled for publication at the time of his death, including those omitted from earlier collections, The Poems is the top-selling of the Collected Works volumes, and it has been in demand steadily since its original appearance in 1989.
Call Number: PR5900.A2 F56 1989
Publication Date: 1989
The Complete Poetical Works of Elizabeth Barrett Browning.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Among all women poets of the English-speaking world in the nineteenth century, none was held in higher critical esteem or was more admired for the independence and courage of her views than Elizabeth Barrett Browning. During the years of her marriage to Robert Browning, her literary reputation far surpassed that of her poet-husband; when visitors came to their home in Florence, she was invariably the greater attraction. Both in England and in the United States she had a wide following among cultured readers.
Call Number: PR 4180 FOOA
Publication Date: 1900
The Complete Poetical Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Samuel Taylor Coleridge; Ernest Hartley Coleridge (Editor)
Samuel Taylor Coleridge was an English poet, critic, and philosopher who was, along with his friend William Wordsworth, one of the founders of the Romantic Movement in England and one of the Lake Poets. He is probably best known for his poems The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Kubla Khan, as well as his major prose work Biographia Literaria.
Call Number: PR 4471 C4
Publication Date: 1912
The Complete Poetry and Selected Prose of John Donne
John Donne; Charles M. Coffin (Editor)
Here are such well-known songs and sonnets as "A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning," "The Extasie," and "A Nocturnall Upon S. Lucies Day," along with the love elegies "Jealosie," "His Parting From Her," and "To His Mistris Going to Bed." Presented as well are Donne's satires, epigrams, verse letters, and holy sonnets, along with his most ambitious and important poems, the Anniversaries. In addition, there is a generous sampling of Donne's prose, including many of his private letters; Ignatius His Conclave, a satiric onslaught on the Jesuits; excerpts from Biathanatos, his celebrated defense of suicide; and his most famous sermons, concluding with the final "Death's Duell."
Call Number: PR2245.A5 C6 1994
Publication Date: 1994
The Essential Byron
George Gordon, Lord Byron; Paul Muldoon (Editor)
Byron's mature style is wonderfully discursive, ranging from Aristotle through hitting the sack to hitting the bottle sack, while relishing the rhyme on "Aristotle" and "bottle" along he way; he reminds us again and again that poetry can be serious without being solemn, that it might even be fun.
Call Number: PR4353 .M85 1989
Publication Date: 1989
Idylls of the King and A Selection of Poems
Alfred Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson evokes past and present, seeking to reconcile the Victorian zeal for public progress with private despair. Full of eloquence, epic grandeur, and myth, his haunting, rhapsodic poems still cast their lyrical spell today.
Call Number: PR5558 .A1 1961
Publication Date: 1961
Kipling: A Selection of His Stories and Poems
Rudyard Kipling; John Beecroft (Editor)
An excellent collection of Kipling's best known stories and poems, including The Jungle Book.
Call Number: PR 4852 B4
Publication Date: 1956
Milton's great 17th-century epic draws upon Bible stories and classical mythology to explore the meaning of existence, as understood by people of the Western world.Paradise Lost has exercised enormous influence on generations of artists and their works, ranging from the Romantic poets William Blake and Percy Bysshe Shelley to Joseph Haydn's oratorio The Creation and J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings.
Call Number: PR3560 .A1 1940
Publication Date: 1940
Poems, Odes, and Sonnets
In his tragically brief career, cut short at age 25 by tuberculosis, Keats constantly experimented, often with dazzling success, and always with steady progress over previous efforts. The unfinished Hyperion is the only English poem after Paradise Lost that is worthy to be called an epic, and it is breathtakingly superior to his early Endymion (1818), written just a few years before. Isabella is a fine narrative poem, but The Eve of St. Agnes (1819), written soon after, is peerless. In Lamia (1819) Keats revived the couplet form, long thought to be dead, in a gorgeous, romantic story.. In just a few months, he wrote the odes "On a Grecian Urn" (1819), "To a Nightingale" (1819), "To Melancholy" (1819), and the marvelously serene "To Autumn" (1819). Keats is now appreciated for his powerful mind, profound grasp of poetic principles, and ceaseless quest for new forms and techniques.
Call Number: PR 4832 P4
Publication Date: 1952
This edition collects every piece of verse known to have been published by the poet himself, or of which he authorized the posthumous publication. Besides explanatory notes on the texts, the book includes the poet's own Notes to the 1849-50 edition and his Prefaces.
Call Number: PR5852.A2 H87 1988
Publication Date: 1988
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
Composed in medieval England by an unknown poet and set in what were (even then) the old days of King Arthur, the tale of Sir Gawain begins when a magical warrior with green skin and green hair interrupts the Christmas party at Camelot with a bizarre challenge: If a person here present, within these premises,/ is big or bold or red blooded enough/ to strike me one stroke and be struck in return in once year's time, says the knight, I shall give him as a gift this gigantic cleaver. Pure, loyal Sir Gawain accepts the agreement: the adventures that ensue include a boar hunt, a deer hunt, and an extended flirtation with a noble lady, designed to test Sir Gawain's bravery, fidelity and chastity, and to explore—with some supernatural help—the true meaning of virtue.
Call Number: PR 2065 G3 1967
Publication Date: 1967
William Blake: A Selection of Poems and Letters
William Blake; J. Bronowski (Editor)
Largely unrecognised during his lifetime, Blake is now considered a seminal figure in the history of both the poetry and visual arts of the Romantic Age. His prophetic poetry has been said to form "what is in proportion to its merits the least read body of poetry in the English language".
Call Number: PR4142 .B7 1964
Publication Date: 1964
British Writers Biographies and Resources
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