365 Days / 365 Plays
On 13 November 2002 – just seven months after winning the Pulitzer Prize for “Topdog/Underdog” – Suzan-Lori Parks got the idea to write a play every day for the forthcoming 365 days. She began that very day, finishing exactly one year later. Each play is a response to what happened on a personal or a public level on that particular day. Each play is unique, however short – many are less than a page in length – and each has its own distinctive character.
About the Author
Suzan-Lori Parks is one of the leading Black American playwrights, the author of The America Play, Venus, Red Letter Plays and the Pulitzer Prize-winning Topdog/Underdog, seen at the Royal Court Theatre in 2003. All are available from NHB.
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The splendour and richness of Chinese classical literature encompasses a dazzling range, from poetry, rhymed prose and eaasy to drama and novels, with outstanding representative works in each genre.
Despite the passage of time, these works remain fresh and relevant today. The immortals lines from Li Bai’s ‘Reflections on a Quiet Night’, “Raising my head, I look at the bright moon; Hanging my head, I think of home,” continue to strike a chord in the heart of many a traveller far from home, while the tragedy in The Dream of the Red Chamber is still able to move us deeply.
Using illustrations and lucid exposition of the various styles of classical Chinese literature, this book takes the reader on a tour of the Chinese literary world and provides a valuable insight into the Chinese civilisation.
The third edition of The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature is the complete and authoritative reference guide to the classical world and its literary heritage. It not only presents the reader with all the essential facts about the authors, tales, and characters from ancient myths and literature, but it also places these details in the wider contexts of the history and society of the Greek and Roman worlds. With an extensive web of cross-references and a useful chronological table and location maps (all of which have been brought fully up to date), this volume traces the development of literary forms and the classical allusions which have become embedded in our Western culture. Extensively revised and updated, the Companion includes more thematic entries – medicine, friendship, science, the concept of freedom, and sexuality. These topical entries provide an excellent starting point to the exploration of their subjects in classical literature. The Companion contains extensive biographies of classical literary figures from Aeschylus to Zeno; entries on a multitude of literary styles from biography and rhetoric to lyric poetry and epic, and character entries and plot summaries for the major figures and myths in the classical canon. It is the ideal guide for students in Classics, and for all who are passionate about the vast and varied literary tradition bequeathed to us from the classical world.
A sweeping tale of abduction, battle, and courtship played out in a universe of deities and demons, The Ramayana is familiar to virtually every Indian. Although the Sanskrit original was composed by Valmiki around the fourth century BC, poets have produced countless versions in different languages. Here, drawing on the work of an eleventh-century poet called Kamban, Narayan employs the skills of a master novelist to re-create the excitement he found in the original. A luminous saga made accessible to new generations of readers, The Ramayana can be enjoyed for its spiritual wisdom, or as a thrilling tale of ancient conflict.
Anthony C. Yu’s translation of The Journey to the West,initially published in 1983, introduced English-speaking audiences to the classic Chinese novel in its entirety for the first time. Written in the sixteenth century, The Journey to the West tells the story of the fourteen-year pilgrimage of the monk Xuanzang, one of China’s most famous religious heroes, and his three supernatural disciples, in search of Buddhist scriptures. Throughout his journey, Xuanzang fights demons who wish to eat him, communes with spirits, and traverses a land riddled with a multitude of obstacles, both real and fantastical. An adventure rich with danger and excitement, this seminal work of the Chinese literary canonis by turns allegory, satire, and fantasy.
With over a hundred chapters written in both prose and poetry, The Journey to the West has always been a complicated and difficult text to render in English while preserving the lyricism of its language and the content of its plot. But Yu has successfully taken on the task, and in this new edition he has made his translations even more accurate and accessible. The explanatory notes are updated and augmented, and Yu has added new material to his introduction, based on his original research as well as on the newest literary criticism and scholarship on Chinese religious traditions. He has also modernized the transliterations included in each volume, using the now-standard Hanyu Pinyin romanization system. Perhaps most important, Yu has made changes to the translation itself in order to make it as precise as possible.
One of the great works of Chinese literature, The Journey to the West is not only invaluable to scholars of Eastern religion and literature, but, in Yu’s elegant rendering, also a delight for any reader.