J. Edward Chamberlin on How Words Shape Our World


For tens of thousands of years, human beings have been using fictional devices to shape their worlds and communicate with one another. Four thousand years ago they began writing down these stories, and a great flourishing of human achievement began. We know it today as literature, a term broad enough to encompass everything from ancient epic poetry to contemporary novels. How did literature develop? What forms has it taken? And what can we learn from engaging with these works today?

Hosted by Jacke Wilson, an amateur scholar with a lifelong passion for literature, The History of Literature takes a fresh look at some of the most compelling examples of creative genius the world has ever known.

It’s a literary smorgasbord! First, Jacke dives into the recent news of the surprising connection between Taylor Swift and Emily Dickinson. Next, he welcomes Mike Palindrome, President of the Literature Supporters Club, for a discussion of why Mike has been reading Flannery O’Connor for so many years. Then storytelling expert J. Edward Chamberlin stops by to discuss his new book, Storylines: How Words Shape Our Worlds, which explores the power of stories to transform despair and disillusionment into hope and possibility. And finally, poet and podcaster Shin Yu Pai (Ten Thousand Things) selects the last book she will ever read. Smaklig måltid!

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