How to Write a Sentence: and How to Read One

Author(s): Stanley Fish


If you know sentences, you know everything. Good sentences promise nothing less than lessons and practice in the organization of the world. Some appreciate fine art; others appreciate fine wines. Stanley Fish appreciates fine sentences. "The New York Times" columnist and world-class professor has long been an aficionado of language: I am always on the lookout for sentences that take your breath away, for sentences that make you say, 'Isn't that something?' or What a sentence! Like a seasoned sportscaster, Fish marvels at the adeptness of finely crafted sentences and breaks them down into digestible morsels, giving readers an instant play-by-play. In this entertaining and erudite gem, Fish offers both sentence craft and sentence pleasure, skills invaluable to any writer (or reader). His vibrant analysis takes us on a literary tour of great writers throughout history - from William Shakespeare, Jane Austen, and Henry James to Martin Luther King Jr., Antonin Scalia, and Elmore Leonard. Indeed, "How to Write a Sentence" is both a spirited love letter to the written word and a key to understanding how great writing works; it is a book that will stand the test of time.


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"How to Write a Sentence is a must read for aspiring writers and anyone who wants to deepen their appreciation of literature. If extraordinary sentences are like sports plays, Fish is the Vin Scully of great writing."--Gerald Graff and Cathy Birkenstein, authors of "They Say/I Say"

Stanley Fish is a professor of law at Florida International University in Miami, and dean emeritus of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has also taught at the University of California at Berkeley, Johns Hopkins University, and Duke University. He is the author of 11 books, most recently Save the World On Your Own Time, on higher education. He lives in Florida and New York City.

General Fields

  • : 9780061840531
  • : HarperCollins Publishers Inc
  • : HarperPaperbacks
  • : July 2012
  • : 203mm X 135mm X 10mm
  • : October 2012
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 176
  • : Stanley Fish
  • : Paperback
  • : English
  • : 808.042
  • : 2010033166