History of Literature

History of Literature
Hosted by Jacke Wilson
Enthusiast Jacke Wilson journeys through the history of literature, from ancient epics to contemporary classics. Find out more at historyofliterature.com and facebook.com/historyofliterature.
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History of Literature

144 Food in Literature (with Ronica Dhar)

Food, glorious food! We all know its power for nourishment, pleasure, and comfort — and we’ve all felt the sharp pangs of its absence. How has this essential part of being alive made its way into novels, short stories, and poetry? Our guest Ronica Dhar, author of the novel Bijou Roy, joins us for a conversation about food in literature, as we select ten mouthwatering (and thought-provoking) examples. Bon appetit!

Works and authors discussed include Kevin Young, Dr. Seuss, J.R.R. Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, William Shakespeare, Beatrix Potter, Patrick O’Brian, Marcel Proust, Virginia Woolf, Beowulf, Elizabeth Alexander, Big Night (the film), Charles Dickens, Arnold Lobel, Russell Hoban, Lillian Hoban, Haruki Murakami, Lewis Carroll, Roald Dahl, C.S. Lewis, Paddington Bear, Pippi Longstocking, and more.

For our first discussion with Ronica, in which she chooses her favorite books, see Episode 35 – A Conversation with Ronica Dhar.

What’s food without the means to buy it? For a draft of 10 great writers at work, see Episode 101 – Writers at Work (with Mike Palindrome).

For more on Patrick O’Brian, see Episode 37 – Great Literary Duos.

For a medieval feast, see Episode 108 – Beowulf (aka Need a Hero? Get a Grip!).


We are giving away a FREE History of Literature Podcast mug and a FREE copy of Ronica Dhar’s book, Bijou Roy, to two lucky Patreon donors! Sign up now at patreon.com/literature to be eligible for this special bonus offer.

If you’d like to purchase a mug instead, or just donate a fiver or two to the show, you can find out how at historyofliterature.com/shop. Learn more about the show at historyofliterature.com or facebook.com/historyofliterature. Contact the host at jackewilsonauthor@gmail.com or on Twitter @thejackewilson.

143 A Soldier’s Heart – Teaching Literature at the U.S. Military Academy (with Professor Elizabeth Samet)

143 A Soldier’s Heart – Teaching Literature at the U.S. Military Academy (with Professor Elizabeth Samet) History of Literature

May 13, 2018 • Since ancient times, societies have used rousing lines of poetry to inspire soldiers to acts of heroism, courage, and sacrifice. But what about literature that expresses doubts...

| May 13, 2018

142 Comedian Joe Pera Talks with Us (with Joe Pera)

142 Comedian Joe Pera Talks with Us (with Joe Pera) History of Literature

May 6, 2018 • Comedian Joe Pera has been hailed as one of the top "Comedians Under 30," "20 of the Most Innovative Comedians Working Today," and the "Cozy Sweater of Comedy." His lovable,...

| May 6, 2018

141 Kurt Vonnegut (with Mike Palindrome)

141 Kurt Vonnegut (with Mike Palindrome) History of Literature

April 29, 2018 • "The year was 2081," the story begins, "and everyone was finally equal." In this episode of the History of Literature, Jacke and Mike take a look at Kurt Vonnegut's classic short...

| April 29, 2018

140 Pulp Fiction and the Hardboiled Crime Novel (with Charles Ardai)

140 Pulp Fiction and the Hardboiled Crime Novel (with Charles Ardai) History of Literature

April 22, 2018 • In 1896, an enterprising man named Frank Munsey published the first copy of Argosy, a magazine that combined cheap printing, cheap paper, and cheap authors to bring affordable,...

| April 22, 2018

139 A Hunger Artist by Franz Kafka

139 A Hunger Artist by Franz Kafka History of Literature

April 15, 2018 • In 1922, the miserable genius Franz Kafka wrote a short story, Ein Hungerkünstler (A Hunger Artist), about another miserable genius: a man whose “art” is to live in a cage...

| April 15, 2018

138 Why Poetry (with Matthew Zapruder)

138 Why Poetry (with Matthew Zapruder) History of Literature

April 8, 2018 • In his new book Why Poetry, the poet Matthew Zapruder has issued "an impassioned call for a return to reading poetry and an incisive argument for its accessibility to all...

| April 8, 2018

137 Haruki Murakami

History of Literature

April 1, 2018 • Haruki Murakami (b. 1949) is one of the rare writers who combines literary admiration with widespread appeal. Host Jacke Wilson is joined by lifelong Murakami fan Mike Palindrome...

| April 1, 2018

136 The Kids Are Alright (Aren’t They?) – Making the Case for Literature

History of Literature

March 22, 2018 • Why does literature matter? Why read at all? Jacke Wilson takes questions from high school students and attempts to make the case for literature.Works and authors discussed...

| March 22, 2018

135 Aristotle Goes to the Movies (with Brian Price)

History of Literature

March 16, 2018 • Hollywood screenwriter and professional script doctor Brian Price, author of Classical Storytelling and Contemporary Screenwriting: Aristotle and the Modern Scriptwriter, found...

| March 16, 2018

134 The Greatest Night of Franz Kafka’s Life

History of Literature

March 10, 2018 • We use the term Kafkaesque to describe bureaucracies and other social institutions with nightmarishly complex, illogical, or bizarre qualities - and in most biographies of Franz...

| March 10, 2018

133 The Hidden Machinery – Discovering the Secrets of Fiction (with Margot Livesey)

History of Literature

March 2, 2018 • Ever wonder how fiction works? Or what great literature can teach us about writing? Novelist Margot Livesey returns to the show for a discussion of her book The Hidden Machinery:...

| March 2, 2018

132 Top 10 Literary Villains

History of Literature

February 23, 2018 • Villains! Bad guys ! Femme fatales! We love them in movies - but what about literature? What makes villains so effective (and so essential)? What do they tell us about their...

| February 23, 2018

131 Dante in Love (with Professor Ellen Nerenberg and Anthony Valerio)

History of Literature

February 15, 2018 • Italian poet Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) was the greatest poet of his era and one of the greatest artists of all time. His masterpiece, the Divine Comedy (or simply Comedìa or...

| February 15, 2018

130 The Poet and the Painter – The Great Love Affair of Anna Akhmatova and Amedeo Modigliani

History of Literature

February 7, 2018 • Anna Akhmatova (1889-1966) began her career as a poet of love and ended it as the poet of suffering and heartbreak, thanks in no small part to the totalitarian Russian regime she...

| February 7, 2018

129 Great Sports Novels – Where Are They? (with Mike Palindrome and Reagan Sova)

History of Literature

February 1, 2018 • Every year, the Super Bowl draws over 100 million viewers in the U.S. alone, and the Olympics and World Cup will be watched by billions around the world. Movies and television...

| February 1, 2018

128 Top 10 Animals in Literature (with Mike Palindrome)

History of Literature

January 25, 2018 • Continuing our look at animals in literature, we’re joined by Mike Palindrome, President of the Literature Supporters Club, for a discussion of the Top 10 Animals in Literature....

| January 25, 2018

127 Gertrude Stein

History of Literature

January 20, 2018 • Gertrude Stein (1874 – 1946) would be essential to the history of literature had she never written a word – but she did write words, lots of them, and they’ve led to her...

| January 20, 2018

126 Animals in Literature (Part One)

History of Literature

January 15, 2018 • Inspired by a listener’s heartfelt request, we take a look at an often overlooked subject: animals in literature. In this episode, a precursor to a forthcoming Draft with...

| January 15, 2018

125 Raymond Carver

History of Literature

January 7, 2018 • Raymond Carver (1938-1988) packed a lot of pain of suffering into his relatively brief life. He also experienced relief and even joy – and along the way, he became one of the...

| January 7, 2018

124 James Joyce’s “The Dead” (Part 2)

History of Literature

December 22, 2017 • In this second part of a two-part episode, we look at the resounding conclusion of James Joyce’s masterpiece “The Dead,” which contains some of the finest prose ever written...

| December 22, 2017

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