Saturday, August 29, 2020

Octo-Emanations reaches Japan and Ireland

Cover artist Nobxhiro Santana has already procured three copies of the new Octo-Emanations anthology. Viewed in triplicate, the colors are very striking. Click the images for the full effect.


Nobxhiro writes that he will display the books at a group exhibition this September. Please click HERE to view his Instagram announcement for the book.

I also have this image from Belfast, where contributor C. E. Matthews has a copy. Note also the copy of Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5.




Please click the cover image to the right of this post to view the Amazon description.

Friday, August 28, 2020

But what does it do?

Lanou Model 240 by Michel Lanoie

It suggests things.

Call it, "The comfort aesthetics of a familiar but fuzzy and obscure nostalgia."

Please click HERE to learn about the artist.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Briefly, from Professor Hodges

The other day, Professor Hodges gave Octo-Emanations a mention in his blog Gypsy Scholarship. Please click HERE to read his remarks. I trust he will have more to say when he receives the book.

And please click the cover image to view the Amazon description:

In other developments, I've heard that some Amazon ordering policies have changed. Outside the United States, ordering from the various regional Amazons is necessary.  Here are links to several regions:
United Kingdom

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Get through Blake (rapidly), and study Milton

Like many young English majors, I once "championed" William Blake. With the help of some perceptive mentors, however, I grew out of the enthusiasm.  Nevertheless, when tackling Milton, knowledge of Blake provides some traction: looking at Blake provides a bit of rudimentary knowledge combined with a pleasant experience of how to learn about poets. But readers should not take Blake too seriously, and the idea is to get through and over Blake as soon as possible.

Ergo, Blake first: A Blake Dictionary by S. Foster Damon is a useful resource. It is easy to read, not bogged down in theoretical language, and so on.

(Incidentally, Richard Kostelantez, who appears regularly in Emanations, was a student of Damon's.)

Next Milton:

Readers need to look at Milton in terms of the question "What can I read that will help me to understand Milton and Paradise Lost?" or "What do I need to know in order to understand Milton and Paradise Lost?"

The Bible
Tasso (especially Il Mondo Creato, and International Authors has a translation.)
World History
History of the Reformation
History of the Good Old Cause: English Civil Wars, Cromwell, the Commonwealth period, the Glorious Revolution, the American Revolution
Theology: St. Augustine, Calvin, Arminius, Socinus, Antinomianism, Gnosticism (but be careful with Gnosticism, it is a heresy that Milton did not subscribe to).
Philosophy: Plato, Aristotle, Locke (and might as well take a glance at Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson)

And look at Milton himself. In the drama Comus, there is a fascinating debate between Comus and the character called Lady, which anticipates Satan's seduction of Eve in Paradise Lost. But in Comus Lady is not deceived by the deceiver. Mmm, interesting stuff... Read The Morning of Christ's Nativity and ask yourself, "There is a lot of pagan stuff in Milton's poetry! Is this Milton guy really a Christian, or is he perhaps practicing white magic?" Hmm...

It is very easy for us Americans to get into the spirit and the world view of Milton, you simply read what we call the "Great American Novel" (and we have three of them): The Scarlet Letter, Moby-Dick and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. International authors offers an edition of The Scarlet Letter with my Afterword, which brings out all the history and theology I could otherwise set forth in detail here, and Milton gets some significant mentions.

There are a number of related posts in my blog. Some are a bit "condensed" but they hit on key issues. Google the blog title Highbrow, my name, and the words "Milton" or "Paradise Lost", and many of these posts will turn up.

As for scholarship and criticism:

Have a look at Damon's book on Blake, this will give you rapid entree into the theological issues and Biblical allusions in Blake that overlap with Milton. Also, Blake was very interested in Milton and was a perceptive reader, though he was sometimes painfully wrong. Blake wrote epics--of various length and various levels of completion--and his best (in my opinion) is titled Milton and is worth reading. Look at Damon's articles in A Blake Dictionary on Milton and Blake's epic Milton.

Christopher Hill, a trendy Marxist historian of the 1970s, has a fairly good book on Milton and Paradise Lost but it has some weaknesses and I'd skip it. Nevertheless, Hill is a very readable and instructive historian, and you can easily read his short history of 17th Century England: The Century of Revolution, 1603-1714.

You can spend a lot of time plowing through the Milton scholarship. OR, once you have a sense of Milton and the academic field of Milton studies, go to William Poole's Milton and the Making of Paradise Lost. Poole has read all the scholarship and he gives the significant bits proper mentions, meanwhile presenting a very clear picture of Milton and how Milton's preparation, experiences and scholarship contribute to the poem. In other words, you get not so much biography as a picture of the intelligence that put the poem together, and this knowledge yields all sorts of insights into what a reader is really looking at when he or she reads the poem.

And of course you must read  Paradise Lost, over and over again. 

Milton by William Blake

Friday, August 21, 2020

Octo-Emanations is now available

On behalf on International Authors, I am happy to announce the publication of Octo-Emanations, the eighth volume in the Emanations anthology series.

The book is available through a variety of regional Amazon websites, including UK, France, Germany, Italy, and Japan. I have also attached front cover art by Nobuhiro Mido (Nobxhiro Santana). Please let your contacts know about the book, and otherwise get the word out through email and social media. Kindly order the volume for your institutional libraries, and please contact me if you know of a journal or web site that is likely to review the book. Here
is the description appearing on Amazon and the International Authors web site.
The eighth volume of the critically acclaimed Emanations literary anthology series, Octo-Emanations presents stunning new art, illustrations, and writing from around the world. The forty-two contributors represent South Korea, Canada, India, Oman, Kenya, Nepal, France, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, Morocco, Kosovo, Spain, the Philippines, Sweden, Japan, and the United States. Comprising a broad range of perspectives, this edition also includes a special new section featuring visual fine arts pieces with artists' statements, making it one of the most exciting projects of the International Authors publishing house to date.
I trust readers will find the book stimulating.

Please click the cover image to view the Amazon sales page.

Cover art by Nobuhiro Mido (Nobxhiro Santana)

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Do the Gospels Abrogate Mosaic Law?

It would seem unlikely, but please click HERE for a discussion that considers the complexity of the issue.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Making books...









                             Stay tuned.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Mos e harro Japoninë, Suzanë (Don't forget Japan, Suzanë) by Aziz Mustafa

My International Authors colleague Aziz Mustafa has published a new novel Mos e harro Japoninë, Suzanë (Don't forget Japan, Suzanë).

Here are some review-descriptions, translated from Albanian by Valdete Muçaj:

Aziz Mustafa was born in the year 1967 in Malisheva in Gjilan. He is a specialist of otorinolaryngology and a writer. Many of his works that belong to the wide field of medical science and many others to the close field of otorinolaryngology are published in several pestigious world science magazines. On the other hand he was always a copious reader and never stopped writing of literature. He published three collections of poems and a book with short stories. This is his first novel. The other one is nearly finished. He lives in Gjilan and works in Gjilan and Prishtina.

Aziz Mustafa whose first profession is a physician but who has a special sense of a poet and a writer did not appear to Albanian reader based on the value of his literary creation in both these genres. He poses a wide knowledge in science and arts which are presented in this novel in a very artistic manner. By combining science with arts his prose like e special perfume within e novel in which he drags the characters around on his will and keeps the reader very engaged make it a very lovely and easy prose for reading. Therefore, I hope and strongly believe that with this prose published by this prestigious publishing house he will achieve the merited place in Albanian literature.

         - Imer Topanica

The writing of this prose started at the castle of Aizuwakamatsu in Japan and was finished during the troubles of pandemic Covid 19, at the flat of the author that is located in front of the theater of the city of Gjilan. The expected and unexpeted events of the novel increase from the dramas and tragedies of the characters who with the memories they wrote in a diary over the years shiver the reader with intelligibility and astonishments of the situations of their lives. In this novel nobody is safe for anything. You live today, tomorrow not. The death comes unexpected, together with it sorrow. The fates of young and old people parade in front of us like the honor guards of soldiers during honor and celebration days for which we must pay close attention.

         - The publishing house Armagedoni

Dr. Mustafa is currently supervising the translation of the novel into English.  Stay tuned for more developments.