BARS Exchange

BARS Exchange

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

Archive for January 2018

Report from ‘Romantic Novels 1818’ – Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

By Anna Mercer

Here is a report by Merrilees Roberts from the first ‘Romantic Novels 1818‘ seminar. This series is sponsored by BARS and seminars are held at the University of Greenwich.

BARS also provides bursaries to support postgraduates and early career researchers who wish to attend. You can find more information on the application process and see details of upcoming seminars in the series here.

A Discussion of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818) with Dr James Grande

Romantic Novels 1818 Seminar January 2018

James Grande delivered a fascinating paper on Frankenstein intended to spark ideas about how to capture the neglected ‘1818′ context of the novel’s first edition, which comprised only 500 copies sold mostly to circulating libraries. Grande took James Chandler’s England in 1819: The Politics of Literary Culture and the Case of Romantic Historicism as an inspiration for thinking through a microhistory of 1818 which would capture the novel’s historical – rather than literary – context. Resisting the critical orthodoxy of readings focused on biographical and ‘family romance’ narratives about the Shelley-Godwin family, Grande suggested possible ways of thinking through Frankenstein‘s reception in 1818. These included setting the dedication to Godwin in the context of the repressive measures enforced …read more


Letter #47: “To any friend who may call” (on John Taylor), January (?) 1818

By The Keats Letters Project We’re running out of days in January, and the best guest for the date of today’s letter is sometime in January 1818, so we’ll go with today! There’s a lot we don’t know about this letter. We’ll count among the uncertainties that it was even written in January 1818. The note was acquired by Amy… Letter #47: “To any friend who may call” (on John Taylor), January (?) 1818 …read more


My forthcoming book on the Shelleys

By annamercer90


In January 2018 I signed the contract to publish an edited monograph of my PhD thesis with Routledge.

This book will be part of the new series: ‘Routledge New Textual Studies in Literature’:

The Routledge New Textual Studies in Literature series seeks to shift the priorities of existing scholarship within the field, producing ground-breaking studies using archives, manuscripts, papers, collections, digital and facsimile collections, and all forms of primary texts and material. It will capitalise on the opportunity represented by the unprecedented wealth of primary materials now available to scholars working across this broad period. Amongst other things, the outputs in this series might

• Reappraise canonical authors or movements in relation to new or overlooked archival evidence, asking how the canon might look different in light of this

• Re-evaluate a well-known genre, movement, or idea through attention to a wide range of texts or primary material

• Exploit and explore the rich variety of texts and primary sources now available digitally or in newly accessible physical archives

…read more


Five Questions: Tom Mole on What the Victorians Made of Romanticism

By Matthew Sangster

Tom Mole is Reader in English Literature and Director of the Centre for the History of the Book at the University of Edinburgh. He has published extensively on Byron, Romantic-period celebrity, periodicals and print culture. His recent books include The Broadview Introduction to Book History and The Broadview Reader in Book History (both with Michelle Levy); he is also a member of the Multigraph Collective, which authored the recently-released Interacting with Print: Elements of Reading in the Era of Print Saturation. His new book, What the Victorians Made of Romanticism: Material Artifacts, Cultural Practices, and Reception History, which we discuss below, was published by Princeton University Press.

1) How did you come to realise that you wanted to write a book about what the Victorians made of Romanticism?

This project grew out of my previous work on Romanticism and celebrity culture. One of the things I discovered in that research was that people at the beginning of the nineteenth century often talked about celebrity as a second-rate kind of fame. Celebrity was a kind of fleeting recognition you received in your own lifetime; true fame was usually posthumous, but it …read more