02 July 2012

A Return to Books

Well, despite being desperately hard-up for money, I found that I could not resist the urge to purchase a couple of books during my travels last week. I plan to make some references to some of these in future posts, but for now, I’ll just mention the titles. 

First, at the wonderful Books at Cummins Station in downtown Nashville, I found many things that I would love to have had, but managed to limit myself to a $5 copy of A Maritain Reader, one of the neat little paperbacks published by Image Books in the 1950s and 60s. I had just come across a reference to one of the pieces in this volume in James Taylor’s Poetic Knowledge, and the very next day, there it was at the bookshop. So far, I’ve read the Introduction and part of the essay Taylor cites—‘Creative Intuition & Poetic Knowledge’. [1] I look forward to placing this one next to my copy of A Gilson Reader. Sadly left behind were, among others, Frye’s The Great Code and Wayne Booth’s The Company We Keep. One day, my friends! 

Then, on the way out of Nashville Saturday afternoon, we couldn’t resist stopping by McKay, just off of I-40, which had come recommended by the great Maximus Daniel Greeson himself. Older, regular readers of this blog may recall my interest in British Poet Laureate, John Masefield, and that I have been assiduously collecting any Masefield I come across for roughly the last ten years. So you can imagine how I felt when I found an enormous collected edition of Masefield’s lyrics (1941) with a little preface from the poet himself for only $3. 

Also at McKay, for $1.50 each, I found Lattimore’s Iliad, strongly recommended by Benjamin in the comments on this post, and the Twentieth Century Views [2] volume on Homer, edited by George Steiner and Robert Fagles. Interestingly, the latter includes not just the ‘critical essays’ mentioned in its subtitle, but a number of modern lyric poems related to Homer, including ‘Telemachos Remembers’ by Edwin Muir, ‘The Shield of Achilles’ by W.H. Auden, ‘Nearing Again the Legendary Isle’ by C. Day Lewis, ‘Hellas’ by Robert Fitzgerald, ‘Ulysses’ by Robert Graves, ‘μητις.....οὐτις’ by W.D. Snodgrass, and ‘Ithaka’ by C.P. Cavafy (which I have previously posted here). 

Finally, I had the immensely gratifying treat of coming home to find a copy of David V. Hicks’s Norms & Nobility: A Treatise on Education waiting on the porch. My friend, Andrew Kern of the CiRCE Institute, had insisted at last year’s CiRCE conference that Hicks’s was an absolutely indispensable book on education, but I had to walk away in sadness when I discovered it cost $42. Well, a newcomer to this blog, Kimberly Jahn, when she learned of this tragedy, graciously volunteered to send gratis an extra copy that she had lying around the house. I have promised to do some blogging on it when I get a chance to start reading it, which I hope to do before the next CiRCE conference, coming up in just a few weeks. Thank you, Kimberly, and I also look forward to hearing the cd!  

[1] Donald & Idella Gallagher, eds., A Maritain Reader (Garden City, NY: Image-Doubleday, 1966), pp. 328-55; cited in James Taylor, Poetic Knowledge: The Recovery of Education (Albany, NY: SUNY, 1998), p. 8. 

[2] George Steiner & Robert Fagles, eds., Homer: A Collection of Critical Essays (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1962). I also have the Twentieth Century Views volume on Donne, edited by the great Helen Gardner.


Daniel said...

Great to visit with you. I am glad you found some stuff! McKay's seems to continue to be the gift that keeps on giving.

I am going to have to snag the Booth book I believe...

Aaron Taylor said...

You jerk! Watch, I'll go and find a cheaper copy online and order it just to show you!

Aaron Taylor said...

There, I did it! $2.99!

Andrew said...

Plus S&H.

Anyway, did you see we're having a one day Hicks Pre-conference discussion?

I'm glad you got the book. I love reading your blog. I can't wait to actually talk with you!

Aaron Taylor said...

Andrew> Touché! Actually, I was asked whether I was going to the Hicks discussion by Kimberly Jahn, which led to the admission that I didn't have it, which led to her sending me a copy just for being a nice guy.

Unfortunately, I'll be driving all day Wed. with our other faculty, so I won't make it to the discussion. But I AM hoping to have it read before the conference anyway.

Thank you for the kind words. Can't wait to talk again soon myself!