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Enigmas and Riddles in Literature (Paperback)
  • Enigmas and Riddles in Literature (Paperback)
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Enigmas and Riddles in Literature (Paperback)

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£31.99
Paperback 312 Pages / Published: 26/11/2009
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How do enigmas and riddles work in literature? This benchmark study investigates the literary trope of the riddle, and its relation to the broader term 'enigma', including enigma as large masterplot. Cook argues for a revival of the old figure of speech known as 'enigma' from Aristotle to the seventeenth century by demonstrating its usefulness. The opening chapter surveys 'enigma personified' as sphinx and griffin, resuscitating a lost Graeco-Latin pun on 'griffin' used by Lewis Carroll. The history and functions of enigma draw on classical and biblical through to modern writing. Wide-ranging examples concentrate on literature in English, especially modern poetry, with three detailed case studies on Dante, Lewis Carroll, and Wallace Stevens. An important contribution to studies of poetic thought and metaphor, this anatomy of the riddle will appeal particularly to readers and scholars of poetry, modern American and comparative literatures, rhetoric, and folk-riddles.

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521119894
Number of pages: 312
Weight: 460 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
'This is an extraordinary book. ... [It] is a feast for the ear, eye, and mind.' Judith Scherer Herz, University of Toronto Quarterly
'This is one of the most resourceful and attractive works of constructive speculation ... Very seldom is an important book so enjoyable.' Alastair Fowler, Yale Review
'... Eleanor Cook's magnificent book ...' Curtis Gruenler, Christianity and Literature
'... beautifully organized and detailed analysis ... Highly recommended ...' Choice
'... meticulous scholarship of this work ...' Katherine Knight, Folklore
'... a great contribution to the theory of literature ...' Lisa Goldfarb, Wallace Stevens Journal

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