- Wide and well-balanced range of classic and contemporary
literature includes 62 stories (21 new), 417 poems (100 new), and 22 plays (4 new) by major authors inside and outside the literary canon.
- The best in-depth coverage of selected major authors:
Once again, chapters in each genre section provide the option of more intensive study of selected authors. Collections of multiple works by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Flannery O'Connor, Alice Munro (new), Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Langston Hughes, Sophocles, and Shakespeare include biographical and critical information, chronologies, a wide range of secondary materials, questions for writing and discussion, and complementary critical readings.
- Albums of contemporary and world literature
showcase the work of celebrated authorssuch as Tobias Wolff, Bessie Head, Martin Espada, Anna Akhmatova, and Brian Frielwho are not frequently anthologized. All selections are accompanied by background information and by questions linking them with more familiar literature.
- The most comprehensive drama section in an introduction to literature
again offers 22 plays4 of them newwith the best selection of contemporary plays. In addition to many classic works of drama and in-depth treatment of Sophocles and Shakespeare, the fifth edition features a Critical Case Study on Henrik Ibsen's A Doll House, a Cultural Case Study on David Henry Hwang's M. Butterfly, expanded albums of contemporary and world drama, and a new sampling of photographs featuring plays in performance.
- 149 Perspectives (27 new)
throughout the bookincluding criticism, interviews, images, and biographyoffer discussion and writing topics as well as models of various critical approaches. The most sensible and useful coverage of literary theory
introduces students to 9 contemporary theoretical approaches, now including discussion of cultural and gender studies. A Critical Case Study for each genreon "Barn Burning," "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," and A Doll Housefurther illustrates contemporary theoretical approaches with 4 analyses of each work. In addition, a new Cultural Case Study for each genre focuses students on cultural criticism. Two Complementary Critical Readings
for each author treated in depth illustrate how different approaches can be applied to a single work. Questions accompanying these readings guide students in analyzing the assumptions behind a particular approach. A Glossary of Literary Terms
provides thorough explanations of more than 200 terms central to the study of literature.
- Writing material integrated throughout the book
includes five chaptersthree on genre-specific writingthat cover every step of the writing process and offer advice on many different kinds of assignments. In addition, Questions for Writing units offer advice on using research, writing about an author covered in depth, and applying a critical approach. 12 sample student papers
illustrate the topics covered in these chapters and offer concrete models for a wide range of assignments. Questions and assignments
more than 2,000 occasions for writing accompany the selections. Quick-reference chart
of all the writing about literature features is provided on the inside front cover to make writing advice easy to locate.
About the Author:
Michael Meyer has taught introductory writing and literature courses for over twenty-five yearssince 1981 at the University of Connecticut and before that at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and the College of William and Mary.
In addition to being an experienced teacher, Meyer is a highly regarded literary scholar. His scholarly articles have appeared in distinguished journals such as American Literature, Studies in the American Renaissance, and Virginia Quarterly Review. An internationally recognized authority on Henry David Thoreau, he is a former president of the Thoreau Society and the coauthor (with Walter Harding) of The New Thoreau Handbook, a standard reference source. His first book, Several More Lives to Live: Thoreau's Political Reputation in America, was awarded the Ralph Henry Gabriel Prize by the American Studies Association. He is also the editor of Frederick Douglass: The Narrative and Selected Writings and the author of The Little, Brown Guide to Writing Research Papers, Third Edition. He is the author or editor of several Bedford Books, including The Compact Bedford Introduction to Literature, Fourth Edition (1997); Poetry: An Introduction, Second Edition (1998); and Thinking and Writing about Literature (1995).