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Built of books : how reading defined the life of Oscar Wilde

Author: Thomas Wright
Publisher: New York : Henry Holt and Co., [2010], 2008] ©2008
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : Biography : English : First U.S. editionView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
An entirely new kind of biography, Built of Books explores the mind and personality of Oscar Wilde through his taste in books This intimate account of Oscar Wilde's life and writings is richer, livelier, and more personal than any book available about the brilliant writer, revealing a man who built himself out of books. His library was his reality, the source of so much that was vital to his life. A reader first,  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Biography
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Wright, Thomas (Thomas Edward), 1973-
Built of books.
(OCoLC)460059093
Named Person: Oscar Wilde; Oscar Wilde
Material Type: Biography, Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Thomas Wright
ISBN: 9781429935098 142993509X
OCLC Number: 865473780
Notes: Originally published as: Oscar's books. London : Chatto & Windus, 2008.
"A John Macrae book/Holt paperback."
Description: 1 online resource (xiv, 370 pages) : illustrations.
Contents: Introduction: 'One of the greatest of the many worlds' --
Part I: BUILT OUT OF BOOKS --
'Hear the song of Oscar!' --
'The Irish imagination' --
'Words that are winged with light' --
'Soul-forward, headlong' --
'A good book and a good fire' --
'More than real life' --
'At home with Lucien' --
'Minute and critical' --
'How to love Greek things' --
'How to grow' --
'The true liber amoris' --
'The despotism of fact' --
'Such a strange influence' --
Part II: THE LIBRARY --
'Spirit of Beauty! tarry still awhile' --
'Holy of Holies' --
'The falser is the truer' --
'More than usually revolting sentimentality' --
'The vulgar beast' --
'The look of a book' --
'Sensuous and intellectual' --
'Smoke and talk' --
'Mirror of perfect friendship' --
'Touched by other lips' --
'Unseen ideal' --
'Mysterious by this love' --
'The heavy odours of the hothouse' --
''Arry!' --
'Ribald titles' --
'Queensberry rules' --
Part III: A LIBRARY OF LAMENTATIONS --
'May I say nothing?' --
'Humanity's machine' --
'Silence' --
'Books in his hand' --
'The greatest consolation' --
'Words of grace' --
'Dazed with the wonder' --
'Infamous Saint Oscar' --
'There they lie' --
'Interested in others' --
'Rest peaceably' --
Afterword: 'Tutti gli angeli' --
APPENDICES --
Appendix I: Wilde's Letter to the Pall Mall Gazette on the Subject of 'The Best Hundred Books' --
Appendix II: Lists of Books Requested by Wilde, 1895-97.
Responsibility: Thomas Wright.

Abstract:

An entirely new kind of biography, Built of Books explores the mind and personality of Oscar Wilde through his taste in books This intimate account of Oscar Wilde's life and writings is richer, livelier, and more personal than any book available about the brilliant writer, revealing a man who built himself out of books. His library was his reality, the source of so much that was vital to his life. A reader first, his readerly encounters, out of all of life's pursuits, are seen to be as significant as his most important relationships with friends, family, or lovers. Wilde's library, which Thomas Wright spent twenty years reading, provides the intellectual (and emotional) climate at the core of this deeply engaging portrait. One of the book's happiest surprises is the story of the author's adventure reading Wilde's library. Reminiscent of Jorge Luis Borges's fictional hero who enters Cervantes's mind by saturating himself in the culture of sixteenth-century Spain, Wright employs Wilde as his own Virgilian guide to world literature. We come to understand how reading can be an extremely sensual experience, producing a physical as well as a spiritual delight.

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