My research trip to Edinburgh and Dundee, generously funded by the Stephen Copley Research Award, was truly a wonderful experience. My thesis, which explores the apocalyptic imagination in literature and art in the long nineteenth century, and literary and artistic networks in London, has led me to the work of several lesser-known writers. One such writer is the prolific and self-taught reformer, historian, novelist, poet, journalist, editor and naturalist Robert Mudie (1780-1842). Born in 1780 in Forfarshire, Scotland, he moved to London at the beginning of the 1820s to continue his career as a writer and journalist. Thus, the goal of this research trip was to gather more information on Robert Mudie’s life and career before he arrived in London.
Robert Mudie was a copious writer, and it has been reported that his oeuvre amounted to over 90 volumes, although it should also be noted that he was no stranger to self-plagiarizing. Tracking down his writings has proved very tricky indeed, especially as he often published his work anonymously. For example, he used at least one pseudonym, the wonderfully Smolett-esque name of …read more
As many of you know, the Lady’s Magazine project began as an effort to provide an annotated index of all of the text content of the Lady’s Magazinefrom 1770 to 1818. In addition to cataloguing every one of the around 15000 anecdotes, essays, serials and so on that the periodical printed during those years, we classified each of these items generically and provided keywords for every separate item in it to make its thousands of pages more easily navigable for modern readers and researchers.
We also worked to identify source texts for the magazine’s reprinted and excerpted material (no mean feat since periodical editors in this era were usually coy, shall we say, about such matters) and attempted to identify as many as we could of the magazine’s anonymous and pseudonymous contributors.
Applications are now open for a Visiting Fellowship at Lancaster University with Nineteenth-Century Matters.
Nineteenth-Century Matters is an initiative jointly run by the British Association for Romantic Studies and the British Association for Victorian Studies. Now in its third year, it is aimed at postdoctoral researchers who have completed their PhD, but are not currently employed in a full-time academic post. Nineteenth-Century Matters offers unaffiliated early career researchers a platform from which to organise professionalization workshops and research seminars on a theme related to nineteenth-century studies, and relevant to the host institution’s specialisms. The focus should be on the nineteenth century, rather than on Romanticism or Victorianism.
For the coming academic year Nineteenth-Century Matters will provide the successful applicant with affiliation in the form of a Visiting Fellowship at Lancaster University. The fellowship will run from 1 September 2018-August 31 2019. The successful fellow will particularly benefit from and contribute towards the University’s expertise in digital and environmental humanities. They will also be encouraged to actively contribute to events being planned by the Research Centre for Culture, Landscape and Environment.
This fellowship includes a Lancaster University e-mail address, and access to its library and electronic resources for the full academic year. There …read more
The BARS Stephen Copley Research Award afforded me the opportunity to visit Chawton House Library in Hampshire, which holds a large collection of women’s literature, predominantly from 1600-1830, including books belonging to the Knight family and borrowed by Jane Austen.
I was able to spend a fortnight in May 2018 studying conduct novels ranging from 1814, the year of Mansfield Park‘s publication, to 1830, when Elizabeth Gaskell became a teenager. The research I undertook will inform the foundation of my PhD thesis in which I will track the tropes and transformation of the conduct novel, from conduct manuals such as Hannah More’s Strictures on the Modern System of Female Education, to the established conduct novels of Frances Burney and Maria Edgeworth. I will consider the collective effect these novels had on women’s writing, and on public opinion regarding what it was appropriate for women to write about.
Though a number of critics have vied to align Austen with contemporaneous conservative and radical novelists alike, there is a distinct …read more
‘Romanticism Goes to University,’ the third installment in a series of three annual symposiums held at Edge Hill University, took place over a warm and sunny weekend this past May. Following ‘Edgy Romanticism/Romanticism on the Edge’ in 2016 and ‘Romanticists Take to Edge Hill’ in 2017, ‘Romanticism Goes to University’ offered participants the chance to consider the Romantic period both as researchers and as teachers, complete with keynote presentations, panels, and workshops, and even live-tweeting.
The first day started off with a panel entitled ‘The Romantic University and Romantic Poetry,’ where Matthew Sanger’s opening paper discussed a number of Romantic poets’ diverging takes on the university experience in their verse, highlighting the conflicting views of higher education at the time. Catherine Ross gave us the institutional perspective in the paper that followed, detailing the organisation of academic curricula in Oxford and Cambridge in the period, along with how students would typically spend their time outside of class, arguing for the importance …read more