• On Rereading

    by Patricia Meyer Spacks
    Price $26.95
    Hardcover
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    On Rereading

Patricia Meyer Spacks

discusses

On Rereading

Date

Dec
2
Friday
December 2, 2011
4:00 PM

Location

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store is pleased to welcome National Book Award Finalist PATRICIA MEYER SPACKS for a discussion of her new book, On Rereading.

After retiring from a lifetime of teaching literature, Patricia Meyer Spacks embarked on a year-long project of rereading dozens of novels: childhood favorites, fiction first encountered in young adulthood and never before revisited, books frequently reread, canonical works of literature she was supposed to have liked but didn’t, guilty pleasures (books she oughtn’t to have liked but did), and stories reread for fun versus those read for the classroom. On Rereading records the sometimes surprising, always fascinating, results of her personal experiment.

Spacks addresses a number of intriguing questions raised by the purposeful act of rereading: Why do we reread novels when, in many instances, we can remember the plot? Why, for example, do some lovers of Jane Austen’s fiction reread her novels every year (or more often)? Why do young children love to hear the same story read aloud every night at bedtime? And why, as adults, do we return to childhood favorites such as The Hobbit, Alice in Wonderland, and the Harry Potter novels? What pleasures does rereading bring? What psychological needs does it answer? What guilt does it induce when life is short and there are so many other things to do (and so many other books to read)? Rereading, Spacks discovers, helps us to make sense of ourselves. It brings us sharply in contact with how we, like the books we reread, have both changed and remained the same.

Patricia Meyer Spacks
Patricia Meyer Spacks

Patricia Meyer Spacks

Patricia Meyer Spacks is a National Book Award finalist and Edgar Shannon Professor of English Emerita, University of Virginia. Her publications include An Argument of Images: The Poetry of Alexander Pope; The Female Imagination; The Adolescent Idea: Myths of Youth and the Adult Imagination; Desire and Truth: Functions of Plot in Eighteenth-Century English Novels; and Boredom: The Literary History of a State of Mind.

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

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