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The Norton Anthology of English Literature, the Major Authors Paperback – Feb 22 2006

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Paperback, Feb 22 2006
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 3024 pages
  • Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc (Np); 8th Revised edition edition (Feb. 22 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393928292
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393928297
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 6.4 x 23.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 2 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #399,479 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa2140414) out of 5 stars 88 reviews
57 of 58 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa25144ec) out of 5 stars It's a keeper! Aug. 25 2006
By Scarletpen - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The 8th edition of the Norton Anthology of English Literature is edited by Greenblatt and contains "the major authors" only. This thorough overview of the genre ranges from 15 c. Anglo Saxon literature (including Seamus Heaney's translation of "Beowulf") to some contemporary British literature (including work by JM Coetzee and Salman Rushdie). The selections are good ones and do not seem to suffer from a single editorial point of view or tone (unlike the Penguin survey edition of modern literature that is, frankly, a complete downer). This Norton edition includes classics such as John Donne's "Meditation 17", Swift's "A Modest Proposal", Stevenson's "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde", an excerpt from Mary Wollstonecraft's "A Vindication on the Rights of Women", "Virginia Woolf's "A Room of One's Own" and so on (it might be a bit thin on the ladies but what is included is the good stuff). As an English teacher and probable reference freak, I am pleased with it.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3416678) out of 5 stars Incredible Amount of Excellent Literature All in One Book! July 19 2011
By Fr. Charles Erlandson - Published on
Format: Paperback
While there have been changes made to the Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume 1 (or A), there's no mistaking that in its genre, this is a masterpiece. It's easy to quibble with which selections make it in and which versions are used, etc. But this is an incredibly rich resource of early English literature.

This is one of the books that helped foster my love of literature, and that of many others. It is a portal to any number of authors you wish to read in more detail. It's hard not to love a book that gives you introductions to the following authors and works - and many, many more!

Bede and Beowulf
The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
Chaucer's Canterbury Tales
Julian of Norwich
Thomas Mallory and the Arthurian Legends
Sir Thomas More and Utopia
William Tyndale, John Calvin, John Foxe
The Book of Common Prayer
Queen Elizabeth
Spencer's The Fairie Queene
Sir Walter Raleigh
Many of Shakespeare's sonnets and 2 of his plays
John Donne
Francis Bacon
George Herbert
John Dryden
Jonathan Swift
Alexander Pope
And John Bunyan

The Norton Anthology series does exactly what it should: introduce its readers to a smorgasbord of the best of English literature. Don't let the size or price daunt you. The size is worth it for the breadth and depth of content. As for price, there are many inexpensive used editions around, going back to many earlier editions.

This book should be on every bookshelf!
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2018b64) out of 5 stars Everything in the palm of your hand. Or, hands... June 4 2007
By Audrey - Published on
Format: Paperback
This edition of the Norton Anthology should be required for any literate person to own and at least leaf through, if not completely consume. It's a terrific collection of the bests of English literature, with very insightful footnotes on each piece. A good purchase, and was a good choice for my professor, who assigned it as the text for an Eng. Lit course. The only problem was the size - this tome is a monster! Definitely not something to carry to the beach, or even on a plane.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2736144) out of 5 stars So great, I bought it twice. Oops! Oct. 5 2011
By Meg Sumner - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I had to purchase this for a class last year, and found it extremely helpful in understanding the works included because of the detailed introductions and headnotes for each author. But when the class was done, I sold the book for the refund. Big mistake, because another class ended up requiring it this semester.

So, I bought it again. It is a mammoth book. About 3" thick and densely packed with material (it had previously been a two-book set years ago). Even though having one book is convenient, it is really a beast to lug around.

Everything is positive about this book except the paper is very thin, almost like a vellum, so notetaking is difficult. On the other hand, you can sell it back for almost what it cost, so it was cost effective, even buying it twice! I think I will end up keeping this as a reference as it's so comprehensive.

It's highly footnoted, which means Beowulf actually made sense, but The Fairie Queen was still next to impossible!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2aba0c0) out of 5 stars The major authors only. Feb. 21 2013
By Adam J. Mendoza - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'll keep this review short.

I was surprised that this was a single volume. Just be aware that this is not the complete version of four books into one but rather just "The major authors".

If you want the complete version, you have to buy the multiple volume version.