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W. B. Yeats's poem "Adam's Curse" provides Donoghue with motif and incentive. In Genesis God says to Adam: "Because thou hast harkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life." Yeats put it this way: "It is certain there is no fine thing / Since Adam's curse but needs much labouring." Based on a conversation he had with his beloved Maud Gonne and her sister Kathleen, Yeats's poem thinks about how difficult it is to be beautiful, to write great poetry, to love. In his Erasmus Lectures, Donoghue thinks about the lasting difficulties involved in understanding, and living with, cultural, literary, and religious values that are in restless relation to one another. On these and related matters, Donoghue enters into conversation with a variety of writers, some of them-John Crowe Ransom, Hans Urs von Balthasar, William Lynch, Alasdair MacIntyre, Emmanuel Levinas, Andrew Delbanco, and Robert Bellah-signaled by the titles of the seven lectures. Into the thematic space suggested by each of these titles Donoghue invites other writers and sages to join the conversation-Henry Adams, William Empson, John Milbank, Czeslaw Milosz, Seamus Heaney, Gabriel Josipovici, and many more. The "talk," as you might expect, keeps coming around to the reading of specific literary texts: passages from Paradise Lost, Stevens's "Esthétique du mal," fiction by Gide and J. F. Powers and J. M. Coetzee, to name only a few. In Adan's Curse, Donoghue brings his special intelligence to bear on some of the intersections where religion and literature provocatively meet.
Genetically speaking, the only difference between men and women is that where women have two X chromosomes, men have one X and one Y. It is surprising that one chromosome difference out of our total of forty-six can have such an important consequence, but it does. Is this relatively small genetic variance really sufficient to explain the huge differences between the sexes, not just the physical but the psychological, social, even cultural? Drawing on his own work at the forefront of modern genetics and the exciting theories of evolutionary biology, Bryan Sykes explores the mysteries of the science of sex and gender, and takes a scientific look at what makes men tick. He addresses the most basic issues of why there are only two sexes in humans and, even, why there is sex at all. He also raises more far-reaching questions, such as: Is there a genetic cause for men's greed, aggression and promiscuity? Is there such a thing as the male homosexual gene? And what do genes tell us about the future for men? Sykes's conclusions will surprise some people and are bound to cause controversy. The all-important male Y chromosome is getting smaller and, as the generations pass, the female genome is taking over as it cannibalizes parts of the Y chromosome. Women are winning the evolutionary battle of the sexes. The shocking conclusion is that men, slowly but surely, are headed for extinction.
Deeply involved with Irish culture and history, W. B. Yeats (1865-1939) is one of the greatest poets writing in the last two centuries. This sourcebook provides essential help for readers who wish to learn more about his powerful, haunting poems. Considering Yeats's early, dreamily evocative poems as well as his passionate, tension-ridden later work, Michael O'Neill offers a refreshingly clear discussion of: *contexts - through an invaluable, accessible overview, a detailed chronology and contemporary documents revealing Yeats's understanding of his vocation as a poet; *interpretations - through helpfully introduced extracts from criticism of Yeats's work, ranging from early responses through to modern critical texts; *key poems - in a section where insightful commentary accompanies the full annotated text of many of Yeats's major poems; *further reading - to guide those interested in additional study. This sourcebook is ideal for those new to Yeats's poetry or those who wish to look deeper into its workings, its reception and the contexts from which it emerged.
Examines the life and writings of William Butler Yeats, including a biographical sketch, detailed synopses of his works, social and historical influences, and more.
Alphabetically arranged entries explain approximately two thousand words and expressions from the Bible and from the mythology of the Greek, Roman, and Norse cultures among others.
An investigation into the myth of the werewolf. It features the key werewolf myths throughout history, such as the French story of Bisclavret, the Norse Berserkers, the Wolf of Madeburg and Native American Skinwalkers.
Reframing Yeats, the first critical study of its kind, traces the historical development of W. B. Yeats's writings across the genres, examining his poetry, autobiographical writings, criticism, and drama with the same critical analysis. While existing studies of Yeats's work choose between a biographical orientation or a formalist approach, Armstrong's study combines the theory of New Historicism and Hermeneutics: a theoretical approach that takes Yeatsian scholarship one step further. Grounded in history and informed by recent studies, this innovative approach presents new interpretations and understandings of Yeats's texts. As well as providing a fresh reading of "Among School Children" and situating his autobiographical writings in relation to preceding Victorian practices and contemporary experimentation, this groundbreaking work documents some of the most important existing readings of Yeats's relationship to history, Modernism and the literary genres.

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