Bedlam: an anthology of sleepless nights

Jane Messer (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportEdited Book/Anthology


Many of literature’s well-known characters have spent nights sleepless: Heathcliff roamed the moors, Hemingway’s waiter didn’t want to close up for the night, Plath’s teenage self stayed up a month. And there are many others who can’t sleep for lust, for joy, for the burden of memory or madness, for despair or their unremitting consciousness. Each of these insomniacs has something special to tell us about the night, those secret hours when all good citizens should be asleep.

Bedlam presents passages on insomnia from world literature past and present. The more than fifty writers include Isak Dinessen, Marcel Proust, Raymond Carver, Marguerite Duras, Colette, Ovid, Christina Stead, Anton Chekhov, Oscar Wilde, Dorothy Parker, Charles Simic, Vikram Seth, Virgilio Piñera, and Elizabeth Jolley.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationSt Leonards, N.S.W
PublisherAllen & Unwin
Number of pages296
ISBN (Print)1864480726, 9781864480726
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 1996
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Selected and Edited by Jane Messer


  • world literature
  • insomnia
  • subjectivity


Dive into the research topics of 'Bedlam: an anthology of sleepless nights'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this