A page from the Frankenstein manuscript, showing corrections
It’s been a ridiculously long time since I last posted on this site, as I’ve been busy finishing my doctoral thesis (which has now been submitted – hurrah!). Lots has been happening in the meantime, which I’ll be blogging about in the coming weeks, but today I want to draw attention to a superb new digital project that will be launching this evening.
The Shelley-Godwin Archive will digitise and publish on the web a range of manuscripts by Mary Wollstonecraft, William Godwin, Percy Shelley, and Mary Shelley. I’ve been lucky enough to work with some of Mary Shelley’s manuscripts in the Bodleian, but this project will make these documents available to anyone with an interest in this family of writers, wherever they are in the world.
Let’s hope it’s suitably dark and dreary tonight, because site goes live at 8.00pm with – yes, you’ve guessed it – the Frankenstein manuscript. This manuscript shows how the text was shaped by both Mary and Percy into the novel that we know today, and it really is fascinating to look at the changes and corrections that were made to this draft. I’m really looking …read more
A reminder that the deadline for BARS’ 2014 Early Career and Postgraduate Conference, Romantic Locations, is coming up in a couple of weeks (on November 15th). This should be a really interesting and convivial event – the organisers are working hard to make sure that the programme is engaging and the conference is affordable. The Call for Papers and further details can be found here. Hope to see many of you there.
Open Book have just published a collection of writings by the French Romantic historian Jules Michelet, edited by Lionel Gossman and featuring new and revised translations by Gossman, Flora Kimmich and Edward K. Kaplan. The volume includes three of Michelet’s programmatic essays: his ‘Introduction to World History’ (1831), his ‘Opening Address at the Faculty of Letters’ (1834) and the preface to the 1869 edition of his History of France. Taken together, the three texts can be read as a kind of manifesto for Romantic historiography, laying out a grand vision of history, what it means, why it matters, and why it is important for citizens to have a lively sense of it. More information on the book can be found on its page on the Open Book site, where the full text can be accessed for free.
Writing for Romantic Heirs, Naomi Billingsley talks about her role in ‘Burning Bright’, a real-world and online exhibition exploring the influence of the work of William Blake as engraver, artist and visionary.
William Blake, ‘Illustrations of the Book of Job’ (London: published by William Blake, 1825) Copyright Rylands Collection (John Rylands University Library)
As recently announced on the Romantic Heirs blog, the John Rylands Library has published an online version of the exhibition ‘Burning Bright: William Blake and the Art of the Book‘. Based on Colin Trodd’s book Visions of Blake : William Blake in the Art World 1830-1930 (Liverpool University Press, 2012) and curated by Stella Halkyard (Visual Collections & Academic Engagement Manager, JRL), the exhibition explored Blake’s work as a commercial engraver and his influence on Victorian writers, artists and designers.
I’ve been closely involved with this project: I developed the structure and wrote the text for the web exhibition, and during the physical exhibition delivered activities for schools and the general public.
I started my PhD, which examines the figure of Christ in Blake’s visual works, at Manchester in September 2012, so the exhibition appeared at the perfect time for me to have something to get stuck into apart from …read more
Exeter – as described by Daniel Defoe in the early eighteenth-century: “large, rich, beautiful, populous and…once very strong”.
Joseph Coles, “A true plan of the city of Excester Anno Domini MDCCIX” (1709)
This week, we’d like to welcome Dr Joseph Crawford from the University of Exeter, here to speak to us about his current research on the city’s eighteenth-century literary culture:
In the early eighteenth century, the south-west of England was still a remote and little-visited area. Exeter, which in 1700 was still one of the largest and richest cities in England, served as the regional capital, separated from London by a hundred and fifty miles of famously terrible West Country roads which took four days to traverse by coach. Throughout the century, the most gifted writers born in the region – John Gay, Hannah Cowley, Samuel Taylor Coleridge – headed to London to seek their fortunes; but the printing and book-selling trades flourished in Exeter, and by the 1780s the city could boast a well-established local literary culture, with Devonshire doctors, clergymen, officers, Dissenters, and in one case even an Exmoor wool-comber coming to Exeter to have their writings printed and sold. In this seminar, I shall …read more
By Anthony Mandal It’s not often that you get the chance to go to a conference which will involve a trip to the pier, a day spent at one of Wales’ national treasures, and introductions to several undeservedly-forgotten Romantic-era novelists. Four Nations Fiction: Women and the Novel, 1780-1830 brought together scholars from across all four nations in a […] …read more
Professor David Bromwich (Yale University) – ‘Romanticism, Justice, and the Idea of the Nation’
Wednesday 23 October, 5:15pm, Seminar Room A, St Cross Building
We’re delighted to welcome Professor David Bromwich from Yale University this week, who has very kindly agreed to speak at Romantic Realignments while he is here in Oxford giving the Clarendon Lectures.
Ahead of Wednesday’s seminar, David has provided a short list of readings for those who would like to consider some – or all – of the main texts we’ll be focusing on during the session:
– Richard Price, Discourse on the Love of our Country
– William Hazlitt, On Patriotism
– William Wordsworth, ‘I grieved for Buonaparte’; ‘To Toussaint L’Ouverture’; ‘When I have borne in memory’; ‘To Thomas Clarkson’
– Abraham Lincoln, Second Inaugural Address
This promises to be a great opportunity for informal discussion, questions and thoughts to thrive; all are warmly encouraged to attend. Hope to see lots of you then!
As the photographs here illustrate, the event was lively and productive, drawing academic participants from Universities in the UK and North America, as well as from cultural institutions such as the National Gallery, the Tate and the Royal Asiatic Society. A report on the day by Matthew Ward (University of St Andrews), recipient of one of two Creative Communities Postgraduate Bursaries, is available below:
Since there are a whole load of deadlines coming up in the next few weeks, I thought it’d be useful to put together a list of conferences currently seeking papers, with links to the full CfPs These are given in deadline order (not long for BSECS now…):