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I am an academic and a writer of literary non-fiction. I have written two academic books: E.E. Cummings’ Modernism and the Classics: Each Imperishable Stanza (OUP 2016; winner of a CAMWS First Book Award) and Rome after Sulla (Bloomsbury Academic 2019).
In 2020, W.W. Norton published my first trade book (literary non-fiction): The Beauty of Living: E.E. Cummings in the Great War, which was a New York Times Editors’ Choice. The Beauty of Living is a slice-of-life biography, telling the story of Cummings’ formative years at Harvard, where he encountered a world of classicizing literary Decadence and the emerging currents of literary modernism, and then his time as a volunteer ambulance driver in France, unjustly imprisoned in a brutal detention center after his fellow-driver and best friend in the unit wrote letters home which spoke with excessive frankness about low morale and war atrocities.
My next book will be a trade biography of Cicero, with Princeton University Press. My two interests, in the ancient Roman world and in early twentieth-century literary modernism, are united for me by my interest in the brutalities of power and in those who have the courage to speak about them.
E.E. Cummings’ Modernism and the Classics: Each Imperishable Stanza (OUP 2016)
Rome after Sulla (Bloomsbury Academic 2019)
The Beauty of Living: E.E. Cummings in the Great War (W.W. Norton 2020)
E.E. Cummings (1894-1962) is a poet beloved for his unpretentious, irreverent, and rule-breaking...