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Images of published work by Devoney Looser, Ayanna Thompson, and Elly van Gelderen

Happy ‘pub’ days: Looser, Thompson, van Gelderen

By

Kristen LaRue-Sandler

Three Department of English faculty members are celebrating the launch of recent work in several kinds of media. New releases include a book of Austen quotations for the Indian subcontinent, a modernized Shakespeare film, and a journal issue on Old English linguistics.

 

The Daily Jane Austen: A Year of Quotes (HarperCollins India, 2020)

Devoney Looser’s edited collection of Jane Austen quotations, originally published by the University of Chicago Press, is reissued with a new cover in India. From the publisher:

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen is eminently, delightfully, and delectably quotable. This truth goes far beyond the first line of Pride and Prejudice, which has muscled out many other excellent sentences. So many gems of wit and wisdom from her novels deserve to be better known, from Northanger Abbey on its lovable, naive heroine – “if adventures will not befal a young lady in her own village, she must seek them abroad” – to Persuasion’s moving lines of love from its regret-filled hero: “You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late.” Devoney Looser has drawn 378 genuine, Austen-authored passages from across the canon, resulting in an anthology that is compulsively readable and repeatable. Whether you approach the collection on a one-a-day model or in a satisfying binge read, you will emerge wiser about Austen, if not about life. The Daily Jane Austen will amuse and inspire skeptical beginners, Janeite experts, and every reader in between by showcasing some of the greatest sentences ever crafted in the history of fiction.

Looser is Foundation Professor of English in literature at ASU.

 

H4 (Random Media, 2020)

Ayanna Thompson is the screenwriter for this adaptation starring veteran Shakespearean actors Harry Lennix, Angus Macfadyen, and Keith David. From the distribution company:

H4 translates Shakespeare’s plays, Henry IV parts I and II, into a futuristic Los Angeles to explore political struggles in the black community.

Thompson is Professor of English in literature at ASU, where she also directs the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

 

The Northumbrian Old English Glosses. Special issue of NOWELE 72:2 (2019)

Elly van Gelderen is the editor of this special volume of NOWELE: North-Western European Language Evolution, an interdisciplinary journal devoted language history and development. From the issue’s introduction:

The articles in this volume contribute to our understanding of Northumbrian Old English of the 10th century, of the nature of external influence, and of the authorship of the glosses. This introduction provides a background to these three areas. Most of the introduction and contributions examine the Lindisfarne Glosses with some discussion of the Rushworth and Durham Glosses. Section 2 shows that the Lindisfarne glossator often adds a (first and second person) pronoun where the Latin has none but allows third person null subjects. Therefore, although the Latin original has obvious influence, Old English grammar comes through. Section 3 reviews the loss of third person -th verbal inflection in favor of -s, especially in Matthew. This reduction may be relevant to the role of external (Scandinavian and British Celtic) influence and is also interesting when the language of the Lindisfarne and Durham Glosses is compared. In Section 4, the use of overt pronouns, relatives, and demonstratives shows an early use of th-pronouns, casting doubt on a Norse origin of they. Section 5 looks at negation mainly from a northern versus southern perspective and Section 6 sums up. Section 7 previews the other contributions and their major themes, namely possible external (Latin, Norse, or British Celtic) influence, the linguistic differences among glossators, the spacing of ‘prefixes’ as evidence for grammaticalization, and the role of doublets.

Van Gelderen is Regents Professor of English in linguistics and applied linguistics at ASU.