Monthly Archives: May 2013

Review: Elizabeth von Arnim: Beyond the German Garden


Elizabeth von Arnim: Beyond the German Garden by Isobel Maddison (Ashgate 2013)
ISBN: 9781409411673

Type ‘Victorian Literature’ into Google, noted Simon J. James in his keynote lecture for ‘Beyond the Garden Party’, and you’ll find almost eight-million search results for sites hosting scholarly journals and university-affiliated projects. Try the same thing with ‘Edwardian Literature’ and you’ll get just over a million hits, the first of which is a Facebook page. It has six ‘Likes’.

The perception of Edwardian literature – particularly Edwardian fiction – as a literary backwater seems always to have been with us. As early as 1923 Virginia Woolf was pinpointing the Edwardian era as ‘the fatal age’ in literature, naming and shaming ‘Mr Wells, Mr Galsworthy, and Mr Arnold’ as ‘the culprits’ of this literary demise. Such dismissals have proved surprisingly difficult to shake off, no more so than in the case of female Edwardian novelists (who, tellingly, Woolf’s ‘Mr Bennett and Mrs Brown’ didn’t even bother to cite). Continue reading

Event: The Critical Heritage of Sherlock Holmes at UCL


Arthur Conan Doyle c.1914

Edwardian scholars may be interested in the following event:

UCL Explores: The Critical Heritage of Sherlock Holmes

From April to June 2013, UCL will bring together academics, enthusiasts, creative practitioners, and popular writers to explore Sherlock Holmes’ critical heritage from all kinds of perspectives and across a number of events.

Starting on April 24, from 6-8PM, Dr Benjamin Poore (York) and Tom Ue (UCL; Birkbeck) will discuss BBC One’s TV drama Sherlock as part of George Potts (UCL) and Marc Farrant (Kingston)’s seminar series ‘Complex TV,’ which focuses on a range of TV programmes that have significantly shaped the medium in the twenty-first century. Poore and Ue will be looking at Moriarty as the series’ super villain, and technology both as a theme and an informing presence on its narrative structure. This meeting will take place at Foster Court 130.

The UCL Festival of the Arts (May 7-17) will launch an interactive display on Holmes’ textual history by Dr Jon Cranfield (Liverpool John Moores) and Ue. Continue reading

CFP: The Real Thing: Henry James and the Material World


The Real Thing: Henry James and the Material World
Sixth international conference of the Henry James Society
University of Aberdeen, 16-19 July 2014

Plenary speakers: Tessa Hadley (Bath Spa),
Alexander Nemerov (Stanford),
Clare Pettitt (King’s College, London)

Call for Papers

Henry James lived in an increasingly materialist culture. During his lifetime, mass production of books, magazines, cheap art and reproduction furniture made decorative objects and literature readily available to a wider audience, but also occasioned anxieties about taste, originality and authenticity. The Real Thing looks at James in the context of the very material world in which his novels were written, published and read. It explores themes such as book history, visual culture, film, photography, museums and galleries, collecting, publishing, book bindings, printing practices, letters, manuscripts and typescripts, illustration, architecture, clothes, furniture, gardens, machinery and technology. Continue reading

Event: Locating Women in Victorian Print Culture


Locating women in Victorian print culture
Thursday 13 June 2013
R1.15 Ramphal Building, University of Warwick

A workshop co-organised by the University of Warwick’s Institute of Advanced Study and the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies.

Laurel Brake (Birkbeck, University of London)
Beth Palmer (University of Surrey)
Margaret Beetham (University of Salford)
Tara Puri (University of Warwick)

The last few decades have seen an increasing interest in nineteenth century print culture. This workshop aims to build on this recent scholarship by bringing together academics working on different aspects of Victorian periodicals. The papers will focus both on questions of gender and genre, as well as the methodological challenges presented by these capacious and diverse entities. Beginning with inquiries as basic as what constitutes a periodical, the papers will explore questions like: What is women’s role as editors, contributors, and readers of these periodicals? How does the form and the multi-generic nature of the periodical shape its reading? And where do women’s magazines fit into women’s literary history?

Programme: Continue reading

Event: Romanticism at the Fin de Siècle


An international conference on collecting, editing, performing, producing, reading, and reviving Romanticism at the Fin de Siècle.

Trinity College Oxford, 14-15 June 2013 Keynote Speaker: Professor Joseph Bristow (UCLA) Registration: You can register online for this conference here.

This conference places Romanticism at the core of the British Fin de Siècle. As an anti-Victorian movement, the British Fin de Siècle is often read forwards and absorbed into a ‘long twentieth century’, in which it takes the shape of a prehistory or an embryonic form of modernism. By contrast, Fin-de-Siècle authors and critics looked back to the past in order to invent their present and imagine their future. Just at the time when the concept of ‘Victorian’ crystallized a distinct set of literary and cultural practices, the radical break with the immediate past found in Romanticism an alternative poetics and politics of the present. Continue reading

Leeds Talk: The Jewish and Yorkshire Identities of William Rothenstein


Crossing the Threshold: The Jewish and Yorkshire Identities of William Rothenstein

Talk by Dr. Samuel Shaw (University of York)

Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery, University of Leeds

22 May 2013; 5.30-6.30pm

Using works featured in the exhibition, ‘Jewish Artists in Yorkshire’, this talk will explore the career of the influential British artist Sir William Rothenstein, who grew up in the large German-Jewish community based in nineteenth-century Bradford.

Though Rothenstein spent most of his career in London, he returned to Yorkshire frequently, and remained an important figure amongst Yorkshire-based artists, from Jacob Kramer to Henry Moore. He had, however, a complex relationship with his roots – one which extended to his Jewish identity.

Despite his liberal beliefs, which distanced him from many London-based Jews, between 1902-1908 he painted a series of works in the Jewish East End that would confirm him as one of the most important Anglo-Jewish artists of the period.

For more see the Leeds website.