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Three Days Before the Shooting . . . (Modern Library) Kindle Edition
From the Hardcover edition. --This text refers to the hardcover edition.
About the Author
John F. Callahan is Morgan S. Odell Professor of Humanities at Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon. His writings include a novel, A Man You Could Love. He is the editor of the Modern Library edition of The Collected Essays of Ralph Ellison and is the literary executor of Ralph Ellison’s estate.
Adam Bradley is an associate professor of English at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is the author of the forthcoming Ralph Ellison–in–Progress, a critical study of Ellison’s unfinished second novel. --This text refers to the hardcover edition.
- ASIN : B00357PU6O
- Publisher : Modern Library (20 January 2010)
- Language : English
- File size : 3707 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 1138 pages
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from other countries
One thing I think you should watch out for in reading this. In the intro sections before most of the bodies of Ellison's texts, the editors end up spoiling many big plot points unnecessarily. I would recommend, thus, reading each cohesive section of *Ellison's writing* first, and THEN all of the letters/introductions/other sections. That way, you get to fully approach Ellison's legendary epic unfinished second novel in all its literary glory unabashed, and THEN discern all the historical elements and the technical approaches of the editors to delivering this volume with as much fidelity as possible. Using this approach for each cohesive section, followed by its intro/notes, and then with the whole-volume letters/notes last of all, this is my recommended reading order:
PART I (Ellison's 60s/70s material)
- Prologue (p. 5)
- Book I (p. 11)
- Book II (p. 235; ToC says 231 but this includes 233-234's spoiling intro!)
- Bliss's Birth (p. 459)
PART I (Editors' notes on Ellison's 60s/70s material)
- Editors' Note to Book I (p. 3)
- Editors' Note to Book II (p. 233)
- Editors' Note to "Bliss's Birth" (p. 457)
PART II (Ellison's 80s/90s material)
- Hickman in Washington, D.C. (p. 503)
- Hickman in Georgia & Oklahoma (p. 663)
- McIntyre at Jessie Rockmore's (p. 929)
PART II (Editors' notes on Ellison's 80s/90s material)
- Introduction to Ralph Ellison's Computer Sequences (p. 485)
- Editors' Note to "Hickman in Washington, D.C." (p. 499)
- Editors' Note to "Hickman in Georgia & Oklahoma" (p. 661)
- Editors' Note to "McIntyre at Jessie Rockmore's" (p. 927)
PART III (Selected variations of Ellison's writing including editors' notes, and eight excerpts published by Ellison)
- Two early drafts of the opening of Book II (p. 979; this time include editors' note there because you already know the plot and the note sets up why the variations are here)
- Variants for "Arrival" (p. 989; this time include editors' note there because you already know the plot and the note sets up why the variations are here)
- Eight Excerpts Published By Ellison (p. 1004)
PART III (Selections of Ellison's notes, and Editors' notes on eight excerpts)
- A Selection of Ellison's Notes (p. 971)
- Editors' Note to Eight Excepts Published by Ellison (p. 1003)
Chronology of Composition (ix)
General Introduction to Three Days Before the Shooting... (xv)
Note that the reading order I described is pretty much the method I used on Part I (the totality of the 60s/70s material), and I'm soon to check out the rest of the volume according to this order too. The "Eight Excerpts Published by Ellison" may also be useful samples to turn friends and family onto this great novel. This being as it is, if I end up having yet more comments for this review based on my reading of those additional parts, I'll edit this review further (I've already edited it once so far). So, to finish up, remember: (1) Buy this book, (2) Read all of Ellison's writing here, with each whole section's allotted letters/notes/intros AFTER you've read that whole section of Ellison's, (3) Bask in the glory and meaningfulness of what you just read, and appreciate how Ellison's letters and the editors' introduction and notes may serve to contextualize the behemoth you just read.
Happy buying! Enjoy and learn from Ellison's incredible unfinished second novel, and appreciate how it was made possible with minimal judgment calls by the editors (which is the best approach they could have taken). This work has much to say to how we should live, the situation of race in America (yes, including today and tomorrow), the place of youthful exuberance, the nature of life, and so much more. Not to mention having innumerable moments that just touch you or hit you so hard in an indescribable way. This is Three Days Before the Shooting....
I think that the reader, familiar with Ellison, will find a different tone in this book. This is more serious, a little less of the not-quite-surrealistic Ellison that sometimes is present in IVM. While some of the scenes are indeed raucous and outright hysterical, one, nevertheless, sees a perhaps more serious intent in the whole.
While the length is initially intimidating, the volume is excellently bound. As it emerges episodically, but not picaresquely, the story is so fascinating as to make the volume difficult to put aside, even for sleep.