The Tough Alchemy of Ben Okri

Bloomsbury Academic (Verlag)
  • erscheint ca. am 20. August 2020
  • Buch
  • |
  • Hardcover
  • |
  • 256 Seiten
978-1-350-15299-1 (ISBN)
Winner of the Booker Prize for The Famished Road, Ben Okri is widely regarded as one of the most important contemporary writers writing today. Featuring a substantial new interview with Ben Okri, a full bibliography of his creative work and covering his complete works, this is the first in-depths study of Okri's themes and artistic vision. Rosemary Gray explores Okri's career long engagement with myth, with Nigerian politics and culture and with environmental crisis in the age of the Anthropocene.
  • Englisch
  • London
  • |
  • Großbritannien
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Für höhere Schule und Studium
5 bw illus
  • Höhe: 234 mm
  • |
  • Breite: 156 mm
978-1-350-15299-1 (9781350152991)
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Rosemary Alice Gray is Emeritus Professor in the Department of English at the University of Pretoria, South Africa. She is Managing Editor of the English Academy Review: Journal of English Studies and her previous publications include Broken Strings: The Politcs of Poetry and Sounding Wings: Short Stories from Africa (edited with Stephen Finn).

PART I: The Alchemy of Life: 'To find life in myth and myth in life' (Birds of Heaven 1996)
1.1 Ben Okri's aphorisms: 'Music on the wings of a soaring bird'
1.2 Epistemic ecology and the 'diminishing boundaries of a shrinking world' in 'Heraclitus' Golden River' from Wild
1.3 Ontopoiesis in Okri's poetic oeuvre and A Time for New Dreams
1.4 Recovering our true state of being in 'The Comic Destiny'
PART II: Rebalancing the triadic elements of life
2.1 Apologia pro In Arcadia: A neglected masterpiece?
2.2 'Domesticating infinity' in Mental Fight and Astonishing the Gods
2.3 Redreaming ways of seeing: Intuitive creativity in The Landscapes Within
2.4 Promoting the poetic cause in 'stokus' from Tales of Freedom
PART III: The mercurial imaginary: The writer as demiurge (artist/ craftsman)
3.1 Sowing 'a quilt of harmony': Eco-phenomenology in 'Lines in Potentis'
3.2 'A clear lucid stream of everywhereness' in Wild: A postmodern perspective
3.3 Survivalist Culture in 'Laughter Beneath the Bridge'
3.4 The Poetic Muse of Archaeology
PART IV: The wheel of transformation: The writer as lodestar (guide)
4.1 Sublime transformative paremiology in A Way of Being Free
4.2 'The Standeruppers': The frightening irony of the Anthropocene
4.3 Conscious Reveries in The Magic Lamp: Dreams of Our Age
4.4 'The Incandescence of the Wind': 'Rain wisdom down upon this earth'
PART V: In search of the marvellous: The sacred ziggurat (symbolic celestial mountain)
5.1 Protean Magic in The Mystery Feast and The Magic Lamp
5.2 An Interval in the Enchantment of Living: The Age of Magic
5.3 When chaos is the god of an era: Rediscovering an 'axis mundi' in Starbook
5.4 In conversation with Ben Okri

This inspired and thoughtful study of the work of the acclaimed novelist and poet Ben Okri emerges from deep reflection on the many different cultural, spiritual and philosophical traditions that weave together in his writing. Rosemary Gray's careful readings shed new and illuminating light on Okri's transformational aesthetic and intensely felt planetary concerns, as manifested in each one of his works. I have no doubt that The Tough Alchemy will remain the go-to study on Okri for many years to come. * Elleke Boehmer, Professor of World Literature in English, University of Oxford, UK * In these essays Rosemary Gray shows her wide reading and her eclectic mind. The essays burst with energy and critical fizz. Often the excitement of discovery can be discerned; often the surprise at intuitive delight can be felt; and often the sheer scale of the research undertaken yields lovely rewards. But mostly it is the yoking of disparate critical disciplines, brought to bear on a new reading of my work, that delivers the interest and the fascination * Ben Okri, Man Booker prize-winning novelist and poet *

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