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Beyond Criticism Editions is the upcoming reincarnation of the Beyond Criticism book series, originally published by Bloomsbury and now part of Boiler House Press' own experiments with the radical new forms that literary criticism might take in the 21st century.
The series launches in June 2021 with this set of four books, including new works by Steve Hanson, Robert Crawford, and Ansgar Allen, as well as a new edition of the brilliant but until now out-of-print "Macbeth, Macbeth" by Ewan Fernie and Simon Palfrey...
by Ewan Fernie & Simon Palfrey
The tragedy is done, the tyrant Macbeth dead. The time is free. But for how long? As Macduff pursues dreams of national revival, smaller lives are seeding. In the ruins of Dunsinane, the Porter tries to keep his three young boys safe from the nightmare of history. In a nunnery deep in Birnam Wood, a girl attempts to forget what she lost in war. Flitting between them, a tortured clairvoyant trembles with the knowledge of what's to come.
A collaboration between two of the world's most eminent Shakespeare scholars, "Macbeth, Macbeth" is a unique mix of creative fiction and literary criticism that charts a new way of doing both, sparking a whole new world from the embers of Shakespeare's original tragedy. "Macbeth, Macbeth" weaves a thread that enrichens the original classic with the manic energy of Tristram Shandy, the grim intensity of Crime and Punishment, and the existential absurdity of Waiting for Godot.
"A miracle, an instant classic."
-- Slavoj Žižek, philosopher
"A thrilling re-imagination of Shakespeare’s darkest play."
-- Lucy Bailey, theatre director
"Shakespeare, I suspect, would have been delighted."
-- Don Paterson, poet
In this novel, an unnamed academic in an unnamed contemporary university, relates his obsession with his tutor, Gordon. He pores over the increasingly bizarre mis-readings in Gordon’s annotations in a strange selection of stolen library books. Is Gordon unraveling a mystery? Or is his own mind unraveling? Meanwhile, an epidemic of catatonia breaks out; academics are found slumped and unconscious at their desks. Is reading itself the cause of this sickness? Is the only escape to return to illiteracy?
Witty, moving, and beautifully written, The Sick List plays with the dividing line between deploring and exemplifying what it most despises. Inspired by the work of the Austrian novelist Thomas Bernhard, it considers how the minds of educated people are moulded by both the breadth of literary culture and the narrowness of academic institutions.
"The Sick List is about menace, about a menace (Gordon), and is written in the voice of a menace. It reads like one of the pen-portraits of surreal ultra-violence in Bernhard's Gargoyles, where education turns out to be the most deceitful panacea of all."
-- Katharine Craik
"The Sick List operates on the far side of literature."
-- John Schad
Textual Non Sense is mischievous, minimalist, and revolutionary: a short fuse intended to spark a fundamental re-thinking of how we engage with notions of canon. Classic texts are mangled, quotes are mis-attributed, and great authors are misidentified as Robert Crawford brings literature and chaos theory together in a romance made on Tinder. William Shakespeare of the School of Literature and Bookmaking introduces a survey of writers' struggles. John Buchan provides his guide to writing a best-seller (blotting paper plays a key role). Professor Mike Foucault employs Big Data to investigate the new discipline, ‘Creaticism', or 'Critive Writing.'
Humour and literary criticism tend to go together like apples and arsenic. Textual Non Sense argues that humour is an essential corrective--a missing ingredient to a cure for the arthritis and calcification of academic literary criticism.
"Absolutely the most important book of our era."
-- Virginia Wool
"I just can’t wait for the American edition!"
-- Emily Dickinson
‘We wait for lite, but behold obscurity, look for britenes, but we walk in darknes.’ A tapestry of quotations from the King James Bible, William Blake, Gilgamesh and the works of seventeenth century Ranter Abiezer Cobbe interwoven and translated into Yorkshire dialect, A Shaken Bible revives familiar passages by setting them in playful dialogue with each other. It demonstrates how the scriptures are the fragmented collages they always were and collapses the Alpha and Omega into a Bible of what Gillian Rose termed the ‘broken middle’. Steven Hanson defies academic and theological traditions while retaining a strong core of theory, creating a unique blend of classics, criticism, and creative writing.
"Pocket-sized, like a holy hand grenade, and packed with enough tight prose to keep a confirmed atheist hooked."
-- Joe Darlington
"... a feast of rich, re-worked, largely seventeenth century English. One might enjoy it simply for the sheer surface sumptuousness of the language, to be dipped into... In its curious, eloquently frustrating, and uncanny way I guess that, to those who have ears to hear, it speaks significant truth."
-- Canon Emeritus, Andrew Shanks
COMING SOON to Boiler House Press. Sign up to receive further launch and early release information, or PRE-ORDER the full set now to be among the first to receive this exquisitely designed and satisfyingly playful set of critically literary adventures.