BARS Exchange

BARS Exchange

Aggregated blogs on Romantic Studies – please click through to read full posts.

Archive for February 2015

Publication Announcement – The Song of Los copy F

By Andrea H. Everett

The Song of Los, copy F, Object 2, detail

The William Blake Archive is pleased to announce the publication of an electronic edition of The Song of Los copy F, from the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Munich, Germany. It joins copies A and D from the British Museum, copy B from the Library of Congress, copy C from the Morgan Library and Museum, and copy E from the Huntington Library. The Archive now has all six extant copies of this illuminated book, making The Song of Los the fifth illuminated book whose entire publishing history is reproduced in the Archive, joining Milton a Poem, All Religions are One, The Book of Ahania, and The Book of Los. The Archive will add The Marriage of Heaven and Hell and all complete copies of There is No Natural Religion to the list later this year.

The eight plates of The Song of Los were produced in 1795; all extant copies (A-F) were color printed in that year in a single pressrun. Divided into sections entitled “Africa” and “Asia,” The Song of Los is the last of Blake’s “Continental Prophecies” (see also America [1793] and  …read more


Thoughts wanted: Eighteenth-Century Book Illustration Reader

By marylshannon

From Dr. Christina Ionescu, Associate Professor Modern Languages and Literatures, Mount Allison University:

Dear colleagues,

Leigh G. Dillard and I are engaged in the planning stages of a reader on eighteenth-century book illustration that would encompass various traditions (English, French, German, Spanish, etc.). In order to best position the reader, we would be most grateful if those of you who work on book illustration (and perhaps also teach courses on the subject) could provide some feedback on our preliminary ideas.

You could write to us directly ( and and we will compile a report for the SHARP list.

1) Would you use such a reader in a course? What type of course would you consider using it in? Would your library be interested in purchasing it?

2) Do you have any suggestions about its contents? Any specific texts that you believe should be included? Any translations of seminal texts that we should commission?

This is what is currently on our list:

i) some relevant excerpts from nineteenth-century texts (Dibdin, the Goncourt brothers, etc.)

ii) some reprints/translations of key chapters from important 1980s/1990s studies on eighteenth-century book illustration (Hodnett, Ph. Stewart, etc.)

iii) theoretical approaches to book illustration as it pertains to the chosen timeframe (e.g. book illustration and …read more


Cleaning Up an Index

By mwils31

Index to the Descriptive Catalogue.

I have recently undertaken the arduous task of formatting the index to Blake’s typographical work, A Descriptive Catalogue. I say it was “arduous”, but I think I have only made it so. The text in question is fairly straightforward.

Part of the Index included in the typographical work of Blake’s “Descriptive Catalogue.”

The main challenge is that the text is justified. We cannot simply encode it as justified because our display window is so large that the text would be stretched to undignified proportions.

Therefore, I justified the text to “left,” but had to finagle the right hand margins to line up. This was done in a silly way, by me, through adjusting the spacing between each of the pesky dash marks that you see above.

By the time I had ripped my hair out trying to align the right margin through this trial and error, I knew that their had to be a better way. This is when my dear colleagues here at the Blake Archive suggested I use a table format. A table would allow me to isolate the text of each line to a table row, which would have a designated width.

In the Digital Humanities, it helps …read more


Report on Cambrian CRECS, 17 Feb 2015

By Alison Harvey by Jamie Castell and Alison Harvey Cambrian CRECS: Nation, Region, Place in the Long 18th Century was the second event hosted by the Cardiff Romanticism and Eighteenth Century Seminar, and as Six Nations fever gripped the country, we sought to consider the position of Wales within Romantic Studies. After a hugely successful launch event with Fight Club, […] …read more


Killing the King with Porter: Freedom of expression in 1794

By sophiecoulombeau On Tuesday morning, I found myself sitting in a pub in London and repeatedly blowing the foam off a pot of porter while somebody filmed me and a gaggle of curious regulars looked on. Academia has often taken me to some rather unexpected places, but this was something of a new level. As I wiped […] …read more


Killing the King with Porter: Freedom of expression in 1794

By sophiecoulombeau On Tuesday morning, I found myself sitting in a pub in London and repeatedly blowing the foam off a pot of porter while somebody filmed me and a gaggle of curious regulars looked on. Academia has often taken me to some rather unexpected places, but this was something of a new level. As I wiped […] …read more


The BARS Review No. 45

By admin


We’re pleased to announce that the spring issue of The BARS Review has just been released. This is the second issue published exclusively in the new open-access online format, and the forty-fifth BARS publication counting the previous numbers of the BARS Bulletin & Review (back issues available here).

The new number contains thirty-six reviews covering forty recent books relating to the Romantic period, including, for the first time, a special spotlight covering three non-English-language publications. Each review can be viewed online either in html or pdf format (click the links to the right of each title); the pdfs of reviews can also be downloaded. If you’d like to work your way through the whole number away from your computer screen, all the reviews can be downloaded as a single pdf, which includes numbered contents pages. The reviews from the previous issue and the final issue of the old Bulletin are also available through the site, which now includes a …read more


“One Republic of Learning”: A Response

By mspeer2014

Screen shot 2015-02-19 at 4.36.46 PM

An article entitled “One Republic of Learning” by Armand Marie Leroi appeared on the 13th of this month in the Opinion Pages of The New York Times. I’ve reproduced what I think is most significant below:

It’s easy to see how it will go. A traditional, analog, scholar will make some claim about the origin, fate or significance of some word, image, trope or theme in some Great Work. He’ll support it with apt quotations, and fillet the canon for more of the same. His evidence will be the sort that natural scientists call “anecdotal” — but that won’t worry him since he’s not doing science.
But then a code-capable graduate student will download the texts — not just the canon, but a thousand more — run the algorithms, produce the graphs, estimate the p values, and show the claim to be false, if false it indeed is. There will be no rejoinder; the analog scholar won’t even know how to read the results. Quantification has triumphed in field after field of the natural and social sciences. It will here, too.
If the rudiments of a new cultural science are visible, so are its limits. There is one great difference between human …read more


Library Day at Newcastle Literary and Philosophical Society

By networksofimprovement


Jon Mee

I was lucky enough to be involved at a Library Day at the Literary and Philosophical Society of Newcastle upon Tyne yesterday. Thanks to the good offices of the President Paul Gailiunas and the Librarian Kay Easson I was able to get access to the archives. Paul showed me the recently discovered recommendation book, which covers the period 1794-1801. Prior to looking at this book, I had thought that women were only allowed in the society from 1799, and then only as reading members, but it shows that after a query by one of the members, John Clennell (see below), the committee revealed that women had always been allowed, although none had ever joined, possibly because, the exchange with Clennell implies, they had never been very enthusiastic.

Clennell from the time he joins c. 1798 is an eager recommender of books, including Mary Hays’s Appeal to the Men of Great Britain on Behalf of Women (1798) and Maria Edgeworth’s Practical Education

One imagines, then, that his query to the committee about their intention of bringing in a new category of membership stemmed from a desire to have women more fully involved. As we can see from the photograph below,
he seems to …read more