Michèle Mendelssohn

Michèle Mendelssohn

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Michèle Mendelssohn is a literary critic and cultural historian. She is Associate Professor of English Literature at the University of Oxford. *****Praise for MAKING OSCAR WILDE***** The Sunday Times MUST READ The Guardian BEST SUMMER BOOKS BBC Culture BOOKS TO READ The Paris Review STAFF PICK Featured on BBC Radio "Fascinating" – The New Yorker "Mendelssohn's remarkable book … uncovers material missed by lengthier biographies, even Richard Ellmann's, and conveys the excitement of real research and discovery." – John Carey in The Sunday Times "A retelling of Wilde's American adventure that genuinely makes you rethink vital elements of his life and work ... Mendelssohn's research is prodigious." – Rachel Cooke in The Observer "An extraordinary new take on Wilde. Even those who claim to know him intimately will be astonished and enthralled by Mendelssohn’s fresh perspective on his multifaceted life."– Eleanor Fitzsimons in The Irish Times "Now that America has come to seem so unsettled and so strange, two books help us to become more alarmed. One is Michèle Mendelssohn’s Making Oscar Wilde. It charts the early rise of Wilde, with special attention to how, during the 1880s, his lecture tours in America, a country beguiled by novelty and in need of excitement, made his name. As long as it was new, it seemed, America wanted it." – Colm Tóibín in The Guardian "Michèle Mendelssohn's astonishing demonstration [shows] that just when you thought you knew everything about the life of Oscar Wilde, there's more.… someone could make a movie out of Making Oscar Wilde." – Andrew Holleran in The Gay & Lesbian Review "Mendelssohn’s scrupulous account humanizes Wilde" – Alexander C. Kafka in The Washington Post "A stylish account of [Wilde's] tumultuous rise, fall and resurrection... a hugely important and enjoyable book." – Irish Post "A fascinating account of how young Wilde’s flair for self-promotion aligned with the birth of celebrity culture during the "age of Barnum" – BBC Culture "A vivid, intelligent look at Victorian celebrity culture through the rise to fame of one of its brightest stars." – New York Journal of Books "Enlightening and provocative ... Making Oscar Wilde is a breezily paced and entertaining read, and throughout Mendelssohn’s style is refreshingly unstuffy." – Gregory Mackie in Literary Review of Canada "A fresh look at Oscar Wilde's English, Irish and American contexts." – Kirkus Review "Making Oscar Wilde is a fresh, exciting and illuminating study of the construction of celebrity and reputation. … The story of St. Oscar will never be the same." – Elaine Showalter, Professor Emerita of English, Princeton University and Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature "One of the most devastating, complex and presently political literary biographies I’ve ever read." – Eileen Myles, author of Chelsea Girls "Mendelssohn ... refocuses the young Wilde for a new generation." – Franny Moyle, author of Constance: The Tragic and Scandalous Life of Mrs Oscar Wilde "Vividly written, consistently illuminating, and lavishly illustrated, this book is full of surprises, above all in showing how Wilde’s Irishness played into the story of race relations in post-Civil War America." – Michael Gorra, author of Portrait of a Novel: Henry James and the Making of an American Masterpiece "An original, meticulously-researched and beautifully-paced account of how a modern writer invented himself, and was invented, as an international artist-celebrity." – Declan Kiberd, Professor of Irish Studies, University of Notre Dame and author of Ulysses and Us "You may not think there is new stuff to learn about Oscar Wilde, but there is – as this book proves." – Gyles Brandreth, President of the Oscar Wilde Society and author of the Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries "Mendelssohn's book reveals a man for whom the word charisma could have been invented, but also a man living on the edge. ... This portrayal of Wilde will only add to the lustre of his reputation." – Steve Craggs in The Northern Echo "Nothing short of thrilling — a highlight of my reading life this year" – Marc Dundas Wood in The Clyde Fitch Report *****Praise for HENRY JAMES, OSCAR WILDE AND AESTHETIC CULTURE***** “Fascinating” -- The Scotsman “Tremendously impressive... exceptionally strong.” -- Victorian Studies “A rewarding and original book” -- 19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century “Impressive… scrupulous scholarship… ground-breaking analysis” -- Journal of American Studies
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