That Black, Dragon-Haunted Pass: The Mystery of Lermontov’s Caucasus

By Tara Isabella Burton “I was traveling along the military road back from Tiflis.” So begins Mikhail Lermontov’s 1833 A […]

George Sand: Her Majorcan Winter of Discontent

By Joni Rendon Never before-and possibly never since-has a Mediterranean island inspired as much enmity as did the Spanish isle […]

Zora Neale Hurston, A Literary Life

By Michelle Potter “It was the time for sitting on porches beside the road. It was the time to hear […]

Chilling Out with Charles Dickens

It’s the borough of Richmond-upon-Thames, in southwest London, and it’s still a place for leisure and pleasure today. Walking round places in the borough associated with the author, it’s easy to imagine Dickens enjoying himself here.

Dickens’ A Christmas Carol: Interview with Performer Mike Randall

By Carly Cassano Did you know Charles Dickens traveled throughout Europe and the Americas performing an edited version of his […]

Becoming Dostoyevsky in St. Petersburg, Russia

Dostoyevsky was fond of crossroads, where stories are found in the foot traffic. Though he never owned or stayed longer than three years in any one apartment, he usually lived at crossroads.

My Own Walden

A few years ago, I had a co-worker who was forever being reprimanded for reading on the job. As his customers clamored for their Vegetable Alfredo’s and Pork Cutlet’s, he hid in the waiter’s lounge squinting at a tiny copy of Henry David Thoreau’s book, Walden. Although Eric was continually warned, the manager never took the book away from him adding, “I’ve read it twice.” “Twice,” Eric echoed in awe. Always one for a challenge, I bought a copy of Walden and joined Eric in his rogue reading sessions, helping fulfill Thoreau’s prophecy that readers would “come to this page to spend borrowed or stolen time, robbing your creditors of an hour.”

A Transcendentalist in New York: Thoreau’s Staten Island Experience

New York’s “forgotten borough” – Staten Island – is almost never considered as having any claim to literary history or distinction at all. And yet American writers like Herman Melville, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Henry James and Edwin Arlington Robinson all had connections to the island, whether through family or actually having called the island home at one point in their lives. Of all these writers, it was Thoreau who established the deepest connection to the island”s people, land and, most of all, surrounding ocean.

An Encounter with William Stafford

A life that gives rise to 51 books in the short span of 79 years can certainly be regarded as literary. William Stafford lived such a life.

At Home With Virginia Woolf

By Chris Hudson In the final entry of her diary on 24th March 1941, Virginia Woolf left no clues to […]