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Why Writing Matters

Drawing lessons from writers of all ages and writing across genres, a distinguished teacher and writer reveals the enduring importance of writing for our time

In this new contribution to Yale University Press’s Why X Matters series, a distinguished writer and scholar tackles central questions of the discipline of writing. Drawing on his own experience with mentors such as John Updike, John Gardner, and James Baldwin, and in turn having taught such rising stars as Jesmyn Ward, Delbanco looks in particular at questions of influence and the contradictory, simultaneous impulses toward imitation and originality. Part memoir, part literary history, and part analysis, this unique text will resonate with students, writers, writing teachers, and bibliophiles.

Author Information

Nicholas Delbanco is the Robert Frost Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of English Language and Literature at the University of Michigan. He has published thirty previous books of fiction and nonfiction, including The Count of Concord, Spring and Fall, The Countess of Stanlein Restored, and The Lost Suitcase: Reflections on the Literary Life.
$58.50
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