"Littery Man": Mark Twain and Modern Authorship

Hardcover | April 30, 1999

byRichard S. Lowry

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As Mark Twain, Samuel Clemens straddled the conflicts between culture and commerce that characterized the era he named the Gilded Age. In "Littery Man", Richard Lowry examines how Twain used these conflicts in his major texts to fashion an "autobiography of authorship," a narrative of his ownclaims to literary authority at that moment when the American Writer emerged as a profession. Drawing on wide range of cultural genres--popular boys' fiction, childbearing manuals, travel narratives, autobiography, and criticism and fiction of the period--Lowry reconstructs how Twain participated inremaking the "literary" into a powerful social category of representation. He shows how, as one of our cultures first modern celebrities, Samuel Clemens transformed his life into the artful performance we have come to know as Mark Twain, and his texts into a searching critique of modern identity ina mass-mediated society. "Littery Man" will appeal to both Twain scholars and to scholars and students of nineteenth-century American literature and culture.

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From Our Editors

A self-styled "American vandal" who pursued literary celebrity with "a mercenary eye" even as genteel America proclaimed him the American Rabelais, Samuel Clemens, as Mark Twain, straddled the conflicts between culture and commerce that characterized the era he named the Gilded Age. In "Littery Man", Richard Lowry examines how Twain us...

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As Mark Twain, Samuel Clemens straddled the conflicts between culture and commerce that characterized the era he named the Gilded Age. In "Littery Man", Richard Lowry examines how Twain used these conflicts in his major texts to fashion an "autobiography of authorship," a narrative of his ownclaims to literary authority at that moment ...

Richard S. Lowery is at College of William and Mary.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:192 pages, 9.57 × 6.57 × 0.83 inPublished:April 30, 1999Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195102126

ISBN - 13:9780195102123

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From Our Editors

A self-styled "American vandal" who pursued literary celebrity with "a mercenary eye" even as genteel America proclaimed him the American Rabelais, Samuel Clemens, as Mark Twain, straddled the conflicts between culture and commerce that characterized the era he named the Gilded Age. In "Littery Man", Richard Lowry examines how Twain used these conflicts in his major texts to fashion an "autobiography of authorship", a narrative of his own claims to literary authority at that moment when the American Writer emerged as a profession. Drawing on a wide range of cultural genres - popular boys' fiction, childrearing manuals, travel narratives, autobiography, and criticism and fiction of the period - Lowry reconstructs how Twain participated in remaking the "literary" into a powerful social category of representation. He shows how, as one of our culture's first modern celebrities, Samuel Clemens transformed his life into the artful performance we have come to know as Mark Twain, and his texts into a searching critique of modern identity in a mass-mediated society. "Litte

Editorial Reviews

"Clearly, this book deserves a careful reading. The author's insights and his exhaustive command of the material merit the attention of all Twainians and indeed if any person devoted to nineteenth-century American literature."--Review