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Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume I (Mark Twain Papers) (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 15. Oktober 2010

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  • Gebundene Ausgabe: 736 Seiten
  • Verlag: University of California Press; Auflage: 1 (15. Oktober 2010)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0520267192
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520267190
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 17,8 x 6,1 x 25,4 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 95.895 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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"Sometimes the autobiography seems Twain's letter to posterity. At other times, reading it feels like eavesdropping on a conversation he is having with himself... This first installment of Twain's autobiography brings us closer to all of him than we have ever come before." New York Review Of Books "This is a book to treasure for all friends of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn." Acadiana Lifestyle Magazine "Dip into the first enormous volume of Twain's autobiography that he had decreed should not appear until 100 years after his death. And Twain will begin to seem strange again, alluring and still astonishing, but less sure-footed, and at times both puzzled and puzzling in ways that still resonate with us, though not the ways we might expect." New York Times "This is a book for dipping, not plunging. Read, as Twain might put it, until interest pales, and then jump. It feels like a form of time travel." New York Times/The Opinion Pages "Twain generously provides the 21st century aficionado a marvelous read. His crystalline humor and expansive range are a continuous source of delight and awe... [He] has given us 'an astonishment' in his autobiography with his final, beautifully unorganized genius and intemperate thoughts. Pull up a chair and revel." Los Angeles Times Book Review "Mission accomplished, Mr. Clemens." -- Roger Boylan Boston Review "His "whole frank mind,' sharp and funny, is seared onto every page. A" Entertainment Weekly "Brimming with Twain's humor, ideas and opinions, this is a book for anyone interested in the writer's work and life." "Pure Twain at his typically discursive, rambling, and droll... The bard of Hannibal still has much to say." American Heritage "The bestseller chart is awash with memoirs -- but none offer the extreme reading of the Autobiography of Mark Twain." -- Debra Craine The Times "Twain's autobiography, finally available after a century, is a garrulous outpouring-and every word beguiles." Wall Street Journal "Promises a no-holds barred perspective on Twain's life, and will be rich with rambunctious, uncompromising opinions." Herald Scotland "Twain would approve!" "Twain's writing here is electric, alternately moving and hilarious. He couldn't write a ho-hum sentence." Library Journal "A major achevement." Choice "Twian's 'Final Plan' has been released in a truly spectacular first volume of his posthumous 'Autobiography'." -- Vitali Vitaliev Engineering & Technology "With the uncensored Twain finally here, we're the furthest thing from indifferent." Time Magazine

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Harriet Elinor Smith is an editor at the Mark Twain Project, which is housed within the Mark Twain Papers, the world's largest archive of primary materials by this major American writer. Under the direction of General Editor Robert H. Hirst, the Project's editors are producing the first comprehensive edition of all of Mark Twain's writings.

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21 von 23 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Donald Mitchell TOP 1000 REZENSENT am 14. Dezember 2010
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
"And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." -- John 8:32 (NKJV)

I haven't had this much fun with a new book since the corrected version of Joyce's Ulysses came out. Let me explain. The only thing better than reading an outstanding work by a great writer is seeing the anatomy of how the work was written. It's fascinating to see the false starts, the problems, their solutions, and the process of mixing it all together to make a wonderful, tasty concoction for readers.

Samuel L. Clemens (a.k.a. Mark Twain) decided he wanted to write a truthful autobiography that would be so accurate in its portrayals that he directed it not be published for 100 years. Despite that admonition, his source material has been scoured to produce earlier versions of "an autobiography." It turns out that what Clemens had in mind was something much more difficult, writing an exhaustive autobiography that allowed him to also candidly share his unusual turn of mind and insert the kind of humor that makes his writing so appealing. As a result of many unsuccessful attempts, he chose to ignore the normal chronological order in favor of dictating segments (and side trips that are not necessarily very related) that appealed to him.

In the process, I came away with a strong feeling that it's hard to put your imprint on an autobiography . . . even if you are a wonderful storyteller and writer. The constraint of telling the truth (no more and no less) is also a daunting one, one that the footnotes to this fascinating volume indicate that Clemens often violated (probably unwittingly in many cases).

Even the "failed" sections make for fascinating reading, including his close association with Ulysses S.
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1.290 von 1.314 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
The Scholarly Mark Twain Edition 21. Oktober 2010
Von C. Hutton - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
The potential reader for this edition should be aware of several items. First, this autobiography is an oversize hardbook which means it may not fit into a bookshelf with other more traditional hardbooks. Second this is an academic press which means that there is a long introduction and discussion of prior autobiographical starts by Mark Twain (1870-1905) for two hundred pages. The actual autobiography of Mark Twain is only 270 pages of transcriptions from his dictation of his 1906 attempt to write his life story. Following the narrative are an additional 150+ pages of notes, index and appendixes. Two more volumes will be published later. Third, this edition is a rambling text with no chronological sequence. Mark Twain told stories as he remembered as they came to his memory. None of these observations are negative but the reader should be aware of these differences.

This book aims to be the definitive edition by publishing everything that Mark dictated or wrote after 1905 in the order that it came into creation. Prior publications were much shorter as various editors organized what they thought was interesting, had his family's approval and was in some chronlogical sequence (Charles Neider did the best overall job of this fifty years ago). What the reader has here is Mark Twain's true speaking voice -- he is doing a monologue in your presence, going wherever his memory takes him.
636 von 663 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Wonderful, but beyond any adequate description 22. Oktober 2010
Von Bruce Trinque - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Fifteen minutes ago I finished reading Volume One of the newly published "Autobiography of Mark Twain". It is no more possible to adequately describe this massive book as to attempt to fully capture the full, intricate realities of a vast range of wild mountains.

Twain tried for many years to write his autobiography, but time and again his efforts ground to a halt and were abandoned, although fragments were kept for eventual use (and presented as part of this Volume One). It was not until Twain fixed upon the mode of orally dictating his autobiography that he found a method that really worked for him and allowed him to complete the project to his own satisfaction. The first portion of these 1906 dictations (plus explanatory editorial notes) form the heart of the present volume (two more volumes will eventually be released to complete the "Autobiography"). The result certainly does not follow a standard autobiographical approach (which Twain characterizes as a "plan that starts you at the cradle and drives you straight for the grave, with no side-excursions permitted on the way. Whereas the side-excursions are the life of our life-voyage, and should be, also, of its history.") The "Autobiography" as dictated instead is all side-excursion, almost stream of consciousness. Twain's intent was that it not be published in unexpurgated form until a hundred years after his death, leaving him free to say whatever he wished about whomever he wished to speak. Portions of it have indeed been published from time to time, in a highly edited form bearing little resemblance to what Twain intended as the true "Autobiography".

In approaching the "Autobiography" the reader should not expect a conventional, chronologically arranged, continuous narrative in the traditional style. Twain strove intentionally, and successfully, to avoid that, instead reaching for an entirely novel style suitable for avoiding what he considered to be the usual "lying" (perhaps especially lying to oneself) found in standard autobiographies. The present volume is presented in four distinct parts: First is a lengthy explanatory section from the editors, providing the background for the "Autobiography" and explaining what Twain was aiming for; this section is probably necessary for better appreciating what Twain eventually achieved, but also may not be the best place to begin browsing. Second are the fragments of autobiographical material Twain wrote over the last few decades of the 19th century, fragments left over from his failed attempts to create an autobiography but retained by him as containing enough material and honesty to satisfy his desires. Third is the real heart of the book: oral dictations that left Twain free to dart and drift wherever his thoughts led him, free of any rigid structure; this section is most open to casual browsing. And fourth are lengthy notes and comments from the editors on Twain's text and dictations, correcting factual errors and expanding upon details.

Reading the dictations is as near as one could hope to be sitting in a room with Twain, listening to him ramble along, mixing trivial events of forty or sixty years before with headlines from today's newspaper -- an effect that Twain was deliberately creating -- and dizzyingly flipping the pages of the calendar back and forth. Imagine Twain sitting there with a cigar and perhaps a glass of Scotch whiskey. Imagine yourself with the cigar and Scotch. It is wonderful, in the true, fundamental sense of that word.
391 von 409 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
To Potential Readers and Gifters 1. Dezember 2010
Von Mark Levine - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
It really should be made clear just what this book is and isn't. It is a completist's edition of a project Twain talked about for years but never actually sat down and wrote. In this scholarly volume, roughly one-third of the massive book details the process of its compilation, by Twain and by the editors (his contemporaries as well as the present ones), and includes what might today be called "outtakes" (several of which are quite interesting and enjoyable), pieces determined not to be intended as part of the Autobiography. One reader commented that "the book needs an editor". That misses the point; the scholarly editing is masterful. It COULD not credibly be edited in the sense of cutting it down as one might a contemporary manuscript to make it suitable for publication.
Another one-third of the tome consists of scholarly notes explaining many of the references in the text. Many of these are clarifications of people (some major, some insignificant)to whom Twain refers, or locations. In many cases these are extraneous to all but the most scholarly or the compulsive who needs to know who EVERYbody is and cannot determine it by context. In some cases, they correct lapses in Twain's memory (he clearly didn't research or check many of his facts)
Only one-third of this volume is the Autobiography itself, and it is only mildly interesting. It is certainly not a chronological narrative, much of it was dictated by an aging and bitter man(part of its sardonic charm), and much of it--- amazingly--- is drawn from a biography of Twain written, as a child, by his beloved daughter, which Twain explicates, albeit through the filter of the subsequent and ongoing grief Twain suffered since her youthful death.
My eyesight is lousy but I was untroubled by the type. I read it in book form, but I can see where it might be problematic on kindle; one has to skip back and forth between the text and the notes, and kindle may not lend itself to that (I wouldn't know). The sheer bulk of the book is indeed troublesome, and one will need two bookmarks, one for text and one for notes (as I often use in reading History).
Lastly, what remains as the "Autobiography"--- the reason, I think, most people would read this edition---is not terribly interesting nor funny. Fortunately, there is so much of Twain that is, and that is in print and easily available, and if one wants to read of Twain's earlier life, I would suggest reading or rereading Life on the Mississippi or his other (in a sense and ironically) more "autobiographical" works. The Library of America volume including Life... (as well as Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer) contains copious but manageable notes and biographical information. My opinion is that it would make a better gift than this to all but academics and (pardon me) twainiacs.
351 von 367 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Must Read But NOT on Kindle 20. November 2010
Von George F. Greenwald - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Through this autobiography I am coming to gain even greater respect for this person I have admired for most of my own 74 years. A marvelous account of his life.

However, because of poor eyesight I am reading the ebook version on my iPad using the Kindle reader. About 30% of the book is composed of clarifications and annotations by editors of the work. Unfortunately, those notes are in a separate section of the book and reference Twain's commentary by page number. However, the ebook version for the Kindle eliminates ALL traces of page numbering in favor of a digital code for each line. Thus there is no possible way to find the information that is being referred to in the editors comments. If possible stick to the hard copy or find a different digital ebook which retains the page references....I will for volumes 2 and 3.
106 von 108 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
My favorite version 4. Mai 2002
Von Craig Chalquist, PhD, author of TERRAPSYCHOLOGY and DEEP CALIFORNIA - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
The problem with putting together Twain's ramblings about himself is that in the original, they are scattered all over his life in no particular organization. The editors of this version have put them in roughly chronological order and taken out some of the more repetitious pieces--and it really works well when you sit down with this remarkable book and make your way through the life tale of the greatest of all tall tale men.
What also comes through clearly is the immense sadness and loneliness he felt at the end of his life. He is a man looking back on a lifetime of irreplaceable moments, some tragic, some unjust, many downright hilarious--and some unspeakably poignant, as when Twain mentions his pride to discover that his little daughter Susy, who died before him, had started writing his biography.
If you want to know more about the man who saw a river so wide it only had one bank, this is the place. More than almost any biography I can remember, this one made me smile, made me laugh loudly, and just as often filled my eyes with tears.
"I love to think of the great and godlike Clemens." -- Rudyard Kipling
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