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