Romantic Circles Blog

In Memory of Marilyn Butler

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The Guardian has posted a rememberance of Marilyn Butler, who died recently.

The first paragraph reads,

Marilyn Butler, who has died aged 77, was one of the leading scholars of Romanticism of her generation. She perhaps did more than any other academic of recent decades to return Romantic literature to the boisterous history out of which it grew. Her books and editions established her reputation among fellow scholars, but were also read with pleasure by students. In person as well as in print she was wonderfully accessible.

The full article is available here.

Many folks on the NASSR listerv are posting their rememberances of Professor Butler as well.

NASSR/Romantic Circles 2nd Annual Pedagogy Contest: Deadline April 2nd

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Just a brief reminder and encouragement to submit materials to this year's NASSR/Romantic Circles Pedagogy Contest.

The contest was started at last year's NASSR Conference as a way of encouraging and highlighting the many teaching innovations occurring in our field. The finalists' panel at the conference yielded a rich and helpful conversation about Romantic pedagogy.

Teachers of all ranks may submit teaching materials. Exemplary submissions consider how teaching revivifies Romanticism, in any of its myriad forms. Digital innovations are encouraged but certainly not required. For a list of previous winners and their syllabi, see the Pedagogy section of the Romantic Circles website:

Finalists will be chosen via author-blind peer review to give a short presentation at a special panel at this year's conference in Washington DC, and their syllabi will be published on the Romantic Circles Pedagogies website. The winner, chosen after the panel, will receive a $250 award and recognition at the NASSR banquet. For more information on the contest see the NASSR 2014 website:

Please send a document of between 3-5 pages to by April 2, 2014. Please include a cover letter with identifying information, which should be left off all other documents. Initial queries and questions are welcomed.

Potential materials might include but are not limited to:
- A cover letter and explanation of the submission, including an argument as to the course or project’s pedagogical innovation and benefits
- Syllabus or parts of a syllabus
- Assignment sheets
- Multimedia or digital materials

New at Romantic Circles Praxis: An Interview with Anne Mellor

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Romantic Circles is pleased to announce the publication of a new volume in the Romantic Circles Praxis series, An Interview with Anne Mellor, conducted and edited by Roxanne Eberle:

In the interview, Mellor recounts her determined commitment to rethinking Romanticism through the lens of gender. On the eve of retirement, she continues to raise questions about our assumptions and preoccupations as Romanticists, even as she looks back on her long career. The audio clips attached to the transcription resonate with Mellor’s intellectual curiosity, her voice prompting a return to the texts, archives, and critical concerns of feminist Romanticism. Roxanne Eberle introduces the volume and conducts the interview.

New Mary Shelley letters uncovered

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BBC news has reported the discovery of a cache of previously unknown letters by Mary Shelley. The find came while Professor Nora Crook of Anglia Ruskin University was researching the holdings of a public records office in Essex, UK. The discovery of the letters, addressed to Horace Smith and his daughter Eliza, was quite by accident, according to Crook. A brief extract from the BBC article explains Crook's account of the find:

"I had an idea that an anonymous review of a book by Miss Crumpe might be by Mary Shelley."

That idea turned out to be wrong but the search took her to the Essex Record Office's online archive.

It was while looking at documents there that she came across a letter from Shelley joking her father was "half in love" with Miss Crump.

"I knew immediately that the phrase had to come from an unpublished letter—and there turned out to be more," she added.

The full article is available here.

Another account can be found on the Cambridge Network here.

Updates to BRANCH

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Dino Franco Felluga, general editor of the BRANCH Web site, has just announced some new content on the site:

I write with an update on BRANCH. As many of you know, I have purposively slowed down production on BRANCH while I complete the million-word Encyclopedia of Victorian Literature for Blackwell, which follows Fred Burwick's three-volume Encyclopedia of Romantic Literature. Production on BRANCH will ramp up again starting next summer. Even so, some articles are wending their way through copy-editing and revision. I write to let you know that I have published five new articles in BRANCH, all on significant events. They arrive just in time for inclusion in your winter/spring syllabi:

· Priti Joshi (U Puget Sound), “1857; or, Can the Indian ‘Mutiny’ Be Fixed?”

· Christopher Keep (Western U), “The Introduction of the Sholes & Glidden Type-Writer, 1874″

· Isaac Land (Indiana SU), “On the Foundings of Sierra Leone, 1787-1808″

· Barbara Leckie (Carleton U), “‘The Bitter Cry of Outcast London’ (1883): Print Exposé and Print Reprise”

· Lesa Scholl (Emmanuel College, U of Queensland), “Irish Migration to London During the c.1845-52 Famine: Henry Mayhew’s Representation in London Labour and the London Poor

Priti Joshi's piece joins a strong cluster on India (with previous BRANCH articles by Anne Clendinning, Judith L. Fisher, Julie Codell, and Aviva Briefel); Isaac Land's joins a growing cluster on Africa (with previous articles by Timothy Johns, Anne Clendinning, Jo Briggs, Dane Kennedy, and Matthew Rubery). Chris Keep's article on the typewriter joins a large cluster on new technologies and pairs well with John Picker's article on the telegraph; Leckie's joins a large cluster on class. Lesa Scholl's piece on the Irish Migration is, surprisingly, the first BRANCH piece on Ireland. Others will follow. Lesa Scholl's piece pairs nicely with Barbara Leckie's.

Welcome to Romantic Circles 2.0!

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Welcome to our completely redesigned and redeveloped website!

We hope you can spend some time with the new site and offer us any feedback you may have. With a database infrastructure undergirded by basic premises of the Semantic Web, the new design offers new ways to explore our expansive content, collected over Romantic Circles’ 17 years. New features include content recommendation, mapping, streaming audio, usage statistics, image galleries and slideshows, and categorized taxonomies that allow users to navigate in customizable ways. On the front page you'll see a slideshow of the newest resources. A sidebar on the left shows media offerings--audio recommendations and a rage could based on the new taxonomy keyword system. In the right sidebar, statistics reveal, for example, the most popular pages searches. A news feed collects blog posts from several relevant blogs (including our own), and a list of CFPs on Romanticism culled and aggregated from U. Penn’s “Calls for Papers” site. Along bottom of the front page is a portal to a brand new section of the site, the Romantic Circles Gallery, edited by Theresa M. Kelley and Richard C. Sha. The Gallery presents fully-curated, high-resolution images from the Romantic era. In addition to the complete collection of images and their metadata, the Gallery offers a number of exhibits curated around a central theme—from representations of the picturesque to depictions of phrenology.

Despite the new look and feel, you’ll find much that’s familiar. A menu at the top of each page links to each of the core sections of the overall Website, Electronic Editions, Romantic Circles Praxis Series volumes, Scholarly Resources, Pedagogical materials. Once you’ve arrived at one of these a resources, or on a page within a resource, you’ll notice on the right sidebar a content recommendation listing other related resources. This recommendation engine makes use of our taxonomy of more than 10,000 unique keywords.

The new Romantic Circles website owes its creation and design to the skill and hard work of our Site Managers, Dave Rettenmaier and Mike Quilligan.

There is much to explore at the new Romantic Circles beyond the brief description here. We hope you will take a little time to dig around the site and to offer us your feedback. Thank you for continuing to collaborate with us to make Romantic Circles a valuable resource for the Romantic studies community.

Keats-Shelley Association posts review of recent staged reading of Prometheus Unbound

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The Keats-Shelley Association of America has posted a review of a recent staged reading of Percy Shelley's Prometheus Unbound. The performance took place on November 18 at the Lucille Lortel Theatre in NYC and was hosted by the Red Bull Theater and the Romanticist Research Group of New York University.

Here is an excerpt from the review:

On November 18, 2013 at the Lucille Lortel Theatre in the West Village, Revelation Readings, in conjunction with Red Bull Theater and the Romanticist Research Group of New York University, presented the first staged reading of Percy Shelley’s Prometheus Unbound since 1998. The performance was followed by an informal Q&A with the director, Craig Baldwin, Red Bull artistic director Jesse Berger, Randie Sessler and Omar F. Miranda from the NYU Department of English, and several exhausted cast members who generously remained after the show to discuss the project with the audience. A sold-out crowd of approximately three hundred—apparently comprising both Shelley enthusiasts and theater fans—enjoyed a lively and nuanced performance that was especially impressive given that the cast had only a single rehearsal that same afternoon.

The full text of the review can be found here.

New Issue of Journal of Interactive Technology and Pedagogy

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The most recent issue of the Journal of Interactive Technology and Pedagogy is now live at Included in this issue is a project by Roger Whitson documenting his experience using process-oriented publishing to teach the expansion of middle-class reading and printing in the nineteenth century alongside the discourse of digital media today.

From the intro:

What classroom roles do journal editors have in the digital age? Roger Whitson invited JITP editors Amanda Licastro and Kimon Keramidas into his class on “The Nineteenth-Century Novel” to explore how editors can supplement traditional classroom instruction and investigate the purpose of design and digital publishing in literary period courses. The course involved a history of reading and book-design in the nineteenth century, along with assignments that encouraged students to experience reading and writing in different modalities. Over the course of twenty months this project has resulted in a wide variety of content, both formal and informal. To display that process and those materials, the authors have designed this project in the form of the interactive timeline below, which gives the scope of the project as a whole. Included in the timeline are date markers of specific milestones and events that took place during the process but don’t link to any specific product, links to documents and multimedia elements created in the evolution of that process, and links to the final formal articles published in the journal.

The full article is available here:

Thanks to Leila Walker for posting this on the NASSR listserv, from which this post is taken.

The Charles Lamb Bulletin Online

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The back catalogue of the Charles Lamb Bulletin (from our first issue in 1973 to issue 143 in July 2008) is now available online at our website:

This is a fantastic new resource available to Elians around the world, allowing free access to a range of distinguished scholarship on the Lambs and their circle.

Issues printed in the last five years, however, have not been made available online to encourage continued subscription to our Society. Please explore our new website devoted to Charles and Mary Lamb.

New issue of 'RaVoN'

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Issue #61 of 'Romanticism and Victorianism on the Net' is now available on the Érudit server.

Guest-edited by Tim Fulford, it is a special issue entitled ‘Coleridge and his Circle: New Perspectives‘. You can find it at:

845 articles and reviews have now been published in RaVoN since its first issue appeared in February 1996.

Table of Contents:

- Tim Fulford, ‘Coleridge and his Circle: New Perspectives’

- Anya Taylor, ‘Catherine the Great: Coleridge, Byron, and Erotic Politics on the Eastern Front’
- Alan Bewell, ‘Coleridge and Communication’
- Julia S. Carlson, ‘Measuring Distance, Pointing Address: The Textual Geography of the “Poem to Coleridge” and “To W. Wordsworth”‘
- Alan Vardy, ‘Coleridge on Broad Stand’
- Tim Fulford, Coleridge’s Visions of 1816: the Political Unconscious and the Poetic Fragment
- Matthew Sangster, ‘“You have not advertised out of it”: Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Francis Jeffrey on Authorship, Networks and Personalities’
- Tom Duggett, ‘Southey’s “New System”: the monitorial controversy and the making of the “entire man of letters”’
- Nicholas Halmi, ‘Coleridge’s Ecumenical Spinoza’

- Talia Schaffer, 'Leah Price. How To Do Things With Books in Victorian Britain'
- Daniel A. Novak, 'Linda M. Shires. Perspectives: Modes of Viewing and Knowing in Nineteenth-Century England'
- Andrew Thompson, 'John Rignall. George Eliot, European Novelist'
- David Kornhaber, 'David Kurnick. Empty Houses: Theatrical Failure and the Novel'
- Jason Camlot, 'James Walter Caufield. Overcoming Matthew Arnold: Ethics in Culture and Criticism'
- Jennifer Green-Lewis, 'Stephanie Spencer. Francis Bedford, Landscape Photography and Nineteenth-Century British Culture: The Artist as Entrepreneur'
- Heather Laird, 'Sara L. Maurer. The Dispossessed State: Narratives of Ownership in Nineteenth-Century Britain and Ireland'
- Maria Frawley, 'Louise Penner. Victorian Medicine and Social Reform: Florence Nightingale among the Novelists'
- Jenny Bourne Taylor, 'Elsie B. Michie. The Vulgar Question of Money: Heiresses, Materialism, and the Novel of Manners from Jane Austen to Henry James'
- Dehn Gilmore, 'Richard Nemesvari. Thomas Hardy, Sensationalism, and the Melodramatic Mode'
- Matthew Potolsky, 'Richard Dellamora. Radclyffe Hall: A Life in Writing'
- Marie-Luise Kohlke, 'Abigail Burnham Bloom and Mary Sanders Pollock (eds.). Victorian Literature and Film Adaptation'
- Shannon Sears, 'Vanessa L. Ryan. Thinking Without Thinking in the Victorian Novel'