'Wordy is about the intoxication of writing; my sense of playful versatility; different voices for different matters: the polemical voice for political columns; the sharp-eyed descriptive take for profiles; poetic precision in grappling with the hard task of translating art into words; lyrical recall for memory pieces. And informing everything a rich sense of the human comedy and the ways it plays through historical time.
It's also a reflection on writers who have been shamelessly gloried in verbal abundance; the performing tumble of language - those who have especially inspired me - Dickens and Melville; Joyce and Marquez.' Simon Schama
Sir Simon Schama has been at the forefront of the arts, political commentary, social analysis and historical study for over forty years. As a teacher of Art History and an award-winning television presenter of iconic history-based programming, Simon is equally a prolific bestselling writer and award-winning columnist for many of the world's foremost publishers, broadsheet newspapers, periodicals and magazines.
His commissioned subjects over the years have been numerous and wide ranging - from the music of Tom Waits, to the works of Sir Quentin Blake; the history of the colour blue, to discussing what skills an actor needs to create a unique performance of Falstaff. Schama's tastes are wide-ranging as they are eloquent, incisive, witty and thought provoking and have entertained and educated the readers of some of the world's most respected publications - the Times, the Guardian, the New Yorker, Harper's Bazaar and Rolling Stone magazine.
Wordy is a celebration of one of the world's foremost writers. This collection of fifty essays chosen by the man himself stretches across four decades and is a treasure trove for all those who have a passion for the arts, politics, food and life.
Simon Schama is University Professor of Art History and History at Columbia University. His award-winning books, translated into fifteen languages, include Citizens, Landscape and Memory, Rembrandt's Eyes, A History of Britain, The Power of Art, Rough Crossings, The American Future, The Face of Britain and The Story of the Jews: Finding the Words (1000 BCE - 1492). His art columns for the New Yorker won the National Magazine Award for criticism and his journalism has appeared regularly in the Guardian and the Financial Times where he is Contributing Editor. He has written and presented more than fifty films for the BBC on subjects as diverse as Tolstoy, American politics, and The Story of the Jews and is co-presenter of a new landmark series on the history of world art, Civilisations.