357 Little Women Remixed (with Bethany C. Morrow) | Thomas Jefferson’s Gospel (with Scott Carter)

It’s a literary feast! National bestselling author Bethany C. Morrow joins Jacke for a discussion of her novel So Many Beginnings: A Little Women Remix, in which four young Black sisters come of age during the American Civil War. PLUS playwright Scott Carter, author of Discord: The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens, and Count Leo Tolstoy, returns to the podcast to tell Jacke about Jefferson’s efforts to write a new version of the New Testament. Enjoy!

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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356 Louisa May Alcott

“I could not write a girls’ story,” Louisa May Alcott protested after a publisher made a specific request that she do so, “knowing little about any but my own sisters and always preferring boys.” But she agreed to try, and the result was Little Women, an immediate bestseller and now a world-famous and well-loved classic. But who was this real-life Jo March? How did her father Bronson’s utopian dreams affect Louisa May and the other women in her family? And what do we make of all this today? In this episode, Jacke takes a look at the incredible Alcotts.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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355 Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Brilliant and contentious, the Swiss-born political philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau (`1712-1768) is one of the key figures of the Enlightenment, with a fame and influence that continues to this day. But although we know him best for his Social Contract, which influenced both the American Constitution writers and the French revolutionaries, in his own time he was as well known for his novels Julie; or, The New Héloïse, and Emile, or On Education, both of which were runaway bestsellers. In this episode, Jacke takes a look at the eventful life, many enemies, and major works of this wide-ranging thinker.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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354 Treasure Island Remixed (with C.B. Lee)

Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic adventure Treasure Island gave the world a number of familiar pirate tropes, like parrots on shoulders and X marks the spot. But it also helped lock us into a somewhat limited view of life on the high seas. Pirates and piracy have existed in many eras in many different oceans–and not every would-be adventurer is a young English boy living in the nineteenth century.

C.B. Lee’s exciting new novel A Clash of Steel: A Treasure Island Remix provides a fresh look at a familiar tale. In this YA novel, two intrepid girls hunt for a legendary treasure on the deadly waters of the South China Sea. In this episode, C.B. joins Jacke for a discussion of what it means to remix a classic, her research into the ruthless pirate queen known as “the Head of the Dragon,” and more.

C.B. Lee is a Lambda Literary Award nominated writer of young adult and middle grade fiction. Her works include A Clash of Steel: A Treasure Island Remix (Feiwel and Friends), the Sidekick Squad series (Duet Books), Ben 10 graphic novels (Boom! Studios), Out Now: Queer We Go Again (HarperTeen), Minecraft: The Shipwreck (Del Rey Books), and From A Certain Point Of View: The Empire Strikes Back (Del Rey Books). Lee’s work has been featured in Teen Vogue, Wired Magazine, Hypable, Tor’s Best of Fantasy and Sci Fi and the American Library Association’s Rainbow List.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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353 Oscar Wilde in Prison (with Scott Carter)

Even the best biographical depictions of Oscar Wilde often skip over the years he spent in prison, perhaps because the episode is so sad and painful. But in doing so, they miss the profundity of his life and writings. In this episode, Scott Carter, author of the new play Wilde Man, joins Jacke to talk about Oscar Wilde’s time in prison, including the writing of the agonizing masterpiece De Profundis.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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352 Charles Baudelaire (with Aaron Poochigian)

The American poet Dana Gioia calls Charles Baudelaire “the first modern poet,” adding “In both style and content, his provocative, alluring, and shockingly original work shaped and enlarged the imagination of later poets, not only in his native France but across Europe and the Americas.” In this episode, acclaimed translator and poet Aaron Poochigian joins Jacke to talk about his new translation of Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du mal, or The Flowers of Evil. ALSO: Jacke bets on himself! Happy Halloween!

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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351 Mary Wollstonecraft (with Samantha Silva)

The writer, philosopher, and trailblazing feminist Mary Wollstonecraft is perhaps best known as the mother of the author of Frankenstein, but this amazing figure deserves more attention than a line in Mary Shelley’s biography. As the author of classic works like Thoughts on the Education of Daughters and A Vindication of the Rights of Women, Wollstonecraft advanced arguments hundreds of years ahead of her time.

In this episode, Jacke talks with screenwriter and novelist Samantha Silva (Mr. Dickens and His Carol) about her approach to writing novels, her immersion in the world of Wollstonecraft, and the pleasures and insights that her new work Love and Fury: A Novel of Mary Wollstonecraft can give to the rest of us.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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350 Mystery! (with Jonah Lehrer)

Mysteries! Beloved by adults and children alike, it’s hard to imagine a genre with a more universal appeal. But what makes mysteries so compelling? What is it about mysteries – and human beings, for that matter – that makes mysteries so seductive? And how do authors like Shakespeare and J.K. Rowling turn the mechanics of mystery into the highest art?

Jonah Lehrer, author of the new book Mystery: A Seduction, A Strategy, A Solution joins Jacke for a special October talk about the science and art behind this beloved literary genre.

AND for a few lucky History of Literature Podcast listeners, we are giving away free signed copies of Mystery: A Seduction, A Strategy, A Solution. Learn more at our Instagram page @historyofliteraturepod. Good luck!

Jonah Lehrer is a writer, journalist, and the author of MysteryA Book About LoveHow We Decide, and Proust Was a Neuroscientist. He graduated from Columbia University and studied at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. He’s written for The New YorkerNatureWiredThe New York Times MagazineThe Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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349 Kafka’s Metamorphosis (with Blume)

A special guest stops by to help Jacke talk about life, literature, and one of the world’s great masterpieces: The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka. Hope you enjoy!

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

 

 

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348 Philip Roth (with Mike Palindrome)

As a child growing up in Newark, New Jersey in the 1930s and 40s, Philip Milton Roth (1933-2018) never thought about being a writer. By the time he died, he had become one of the most famous and celebrated figures in the literary world – though his writing and personal flaws attracted criticism as well as admiration. In this episode, Jacke and Mike discuss the life and potential legacy of Philip Roth, author of Goodbye Columbus, Portnoy’s Complaint, Sabbath’s Theater, American Pastoral, The Plot Against America, and many other works.

 

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.

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