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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Kevin Mac Donnell <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 29 Oct 2010 16:38:23 -0500
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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
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I want to thank Benjamin Griffin for taking the time to offer a very 
reasonable explanation. I did not notice the mention of Kiskis's 
introduction to his edition along with the studies by Cox, et al.

To focus only on those editions that included previously unpublished 
materials makes sense, although after seeing Paine, DeVoto,  and Neider's 
works cited, I guess I can't quite shake the feeling that that Kiskis should 
at least get a gold star for publishing an edition of the autobiography 
without "editing" Twain's text. This is coupled with a sense of gratitude 
that we now will finally have a well-edited comprehensive edition.

Mac Donnell Rare Books
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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Benjamin Griffin" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 3:12 PM
Subject: Re: Mark Twain's Amazing Embargo: The brilliant brand management 
behind the handling of his autobiography.

> Kevin Mac Donnell speaks of a ‚?odecision to exclude‚?Ě Michael Kiskis‚?Ts 
> 1990
> edition from the MTP edition, and has invited an explanation.
> The first thing to say is that Prof. Kiskis‚?Ts two editions are *not* in
> fact ‚?oabsent‚?Ě from our edition: we cite the Introduction to his 
> edition
> alongside the notable studies of Cox (1966), Krauth (1999) and Robinson
> (2007). And both of his editions are in the References list (SLC 1990; SLC
> 1996).
> Now, in our Introduction and in the appendix ‚?oPrevious Publication,‚?Ě 
> we
> deal only with editions that presented previously unpublished material.
> That narrows the list to: NAR (1906-7) (which, as Steve Hoffman notes, we
> treat as the first edition); Paine (1924); DeVoto (1940); and Neider
> (1959). Had we tried, in that appendix, to track the republications of
> previously published material, the list would have become unmanageable.
> Surely it‚?Ts unnecessary to note that whatever appeared in NAR perforce
> appears in SLC 1990 and SLC 1996?
> Please note that our edition makes no claim to trace the history of
> republication as such. The subject of the Introduction is the genesis of
> the text. The NAR chapters are treated there only because the writing of
> the Autobiography proper is inseparable from the creation of the NAR
> chapters. The later publications of Paine, DeVoto, and Neider are
> discussed only insofar as their inadequacies are part of the reason for
> the present edition.
> Likewise, the References list is *not* a checklist of work on the
> Autobiography.  It only gives information about works we needed to cite in
> explaining the text. Consequently, many great names are absent from that
> list‚?"by design.
> We have made no attempt to discuss the reception of the Autobiography
> beyond Clemens‚?Ts death, no attempt to track its critical reception and
> cultural impact. They're not within our scope; but if they should be
> within yours, can your work be anything but enhanced by the availability,
> for the first time, of the complete text, critically edited and annotated?
> -- 
> Benjamin Griffin
> Mark Twain Project
> The Bancroft Library
> University of California, Berkeley
> -----
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