Discover The Literary Agenda from Oxford University Press

Discover The Literary Agenda from Oxford University Press


The Literary Agenda is a series of short polemical monographs about the importance of literature and of reading in the wider world and about the state of literary education inside schools and universities. The series seeks to shows why now is the right time to start reinvigorated work into the meaning and value of reading literature. Each short work takes one aspect of ‘the literary’, exploring the standing of literary thinking in the twenty-first century and speculating on its future direction. This controversial series offers strong personal visions involving writers and thinkers from many disciplines, each examining the role of literature within their own life’s work and thought, and the effect of that work, in turn, upon literary thinking.


Reader’s Liberation
Jonathan Rose
Pub Date- 11.01.2018
ISBN 9780198723554
RRP- £14.99
Addresses some of the biggest questions of the internet and digital age:
What should we be reading? Can we trust what we read in the mass media?
Can we use the Internet to find out the truth? Surveys the history of
independent sceptical reading and explores censorship, surveillance, ‘fake
news’, and mass manipulation through the media. It is written in an
accessible, engaging, and often humorous style.


The Humanities and Everyday Life
Michael Levenson
Pub Date- 16.11.2017
ISBN 9780198808299
RRP- £14.99
Michael Levenson considers how the humanities exist beyond the walls of
universities and take place in daily life- in book clubs, public libraries,
museums, and historical re-enactments. He poses questions about
amateurs versus professionals, what constitutes expertise, and the recent
backlash against political elites.


Literature and the Public Good
Rick Rylance
Pub Date- 13.10.2016
ISBN 9780199654390
RRP- £14.99
Rick Rylance addresses the debate over the public value of literary studies,
from antiquity to the present day. He offers an account of the foundational
issue of ‘the public good’ and explores the disciplinary integrity of literary



Tradition: A Feeling for the Literary Past
Seth Lerer
Pub Date- 29.09.2016
ISBN 9780198736288
RRP- £14.99
Seth Lerer explores our relationship to the literary past in an age marked by
historical self-consciousness, critical distance, and shifts in cultural literacy.
He examines a range of fiction, poetry, and criticism in order to understand
the ways in which the literary past makes us, and how we create canons for
reading, teaching, and scholarship.


Is Literature Healthy?
Josie Billington
Pub Date- 29.09.2016
ISBN 9780198724698
RRP £14.99
Medical Humanities comprises disciplines as diverse as literature, the visual
and performing arts, the history of medicine, and bioethics. Josie Billington
examines the value that literature adds to medical education in health
training and practice, and defends the power of the arts as a remedial force.



The Tragic Imagination
Rowan Williams
Pub Date- 29.09.2016
ISBN 9780198736417
RRP- £14.99
Rowan Williams explores the definition of the tragic as a mode of narrative,
in this short and thought-provoking volume. He turns to subjects including
the role of irony in tragedy, the relationship between tragedy and political as
well as religious rhetoric, common ground between tragedy and comedy,
and the complex place of theology in the debate.


Tales of Literacy for the 21st Century
Maryanne Wolf
Pub Date- 28.07.2016
ISBN 9780198724179
RRP- £14.99
Maryanne Wolf tackles some of the most difficult questions for the next
generation around literacy and thought, as we continue to move into a digital
culture. It explores research from multiple disciplines on what it means to be
literate, and addresses the problem of universal literacy.



Everyday Stories
Rachel Bowlby
Pub Date- 23.06.2016
ISBN 9780198727699
RRP- £14.99
Ordinary life is full of words, images, and stories: we spend our days talking
and writing about what’s going on, and what has happened. Rachel Bowlby
makes us think again about this life: always the same, always slightly
changing. Drawing out the stories that surround us, she explores everyday
stories, old and new—in literature and in real life.



The Novel: A Survival Skill
Tim Parks
Pub Date- 16.07.2015
ISBN 9780198739593
RRP- £14.99
The Novel: a survival skill presents reading as an exciting and dangerous
meeting with another person. Writing the book is part of the novelist’s life, a
card played in a long game of dealing with the world and the reader’s
reaction is likewise part of their life and your seeking a narrative for
themselves and a position with regard to all kinds of behaviour. Tim Parks
gets much closer to the real experience of reading, the mysteries of our
positive and negative responses offering an account of what is at stake in
the business of writing and reading.


Repetition and Identity
Catherine Pickstock
Pub Date- 03.10.2013
ISBN 9780199683611
RRP £14.99
A fresh and unusual perspective on the literary, Catherine Pickstock argues
that the mystery of things can only be unravelled through the repetitions of
fiction, history, inhabited subjectivity, and revealed event.




David Constantine
Pub Date- 03.10.2013
ISBN 9780199698479
RRP- £14.99
David Constantine argues that poetry matters. It matters for individuals and
for the society they are members of. He asserts that poetry is not for the few
but for the many, and belongs and can only thrive among them, speaks of
and to their concerns. Poetry considers both the writing and the reading of
poetry, which the Constantine views as kindred activities. He examines what
goes into the writing of a poem and considers what good there is in reading


Reading and the Reader
Philip Davis
Pub Date- 03.10.2013
ISBN 9780199683185
Reading and the Reader offers a defence of reading serious literature,
where reading offers a place for inner contemplation, emotion, imagination,
and thought-experiment through the energising booster-rocket of literature. It
is argued that literature creates a holding-ground in which a dense sense of
experience is registered. Such a place is vital to human well-being in the
following respects: in sustaining the ability to use and not just suffer one’s
experience; to be able to think one’s thoughts, even those that are
customarily unadmitted or felt as anomalous or unworthy; to find room for a
realm of speculation in between religions and secularization, in between
literature and life.

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