Review 19: Books Announced
 

NBOL-19 Books Announced


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We welcome review proposals for any books listed below that are not already assigned to a reviewer. For more information, see Guidelines for Reviewers, final paragraph.



BEER, GILLIAN
ALICE IN SPACE: THE SIDEWAYS VICTORIAN WORLD OF LEWIS CARROLL (Chicago, 2016) -

Beer reminds us that Carroll conceived his Alice books during the 1860s, a moment of intense intellectual upheaval, as new scientific, linguistic, educational, and mathematical ideas flourished around him and far beyond. This book reveals the contexts within which the Alice books first lived, bringing back the zest to jokes lost over time and poignancy to hidden references.






BERGMAN, JILL, ED.
CHARLOTTE PERKINS GILMAN AND A WOMAN'S PLACE IN AMERICA (Alabama, 2017) ix + 228 pp. -

Assessing Gilman 's renunciation of wifehood and maternity, tracking her move to the American West, and examining works such as "The Yellow Wallpaper" and Herland, this volume explains her construction of place, her representations of male dominance and female subjugation, and her analysis of the rules and obligations that women feel in conforming to the home.
Reviewed by Cynthia J. Davis.





BEWELL, ALAN
NATURES IN TRANSLATION: ROMANTICISM AND COLONIAL NATURAL HISTORY (Johns Hopkins, 2017) xvii + 393 pp. -

Ranging from Erasmus and Charles Darwin to Wordsworth and Mary Shelley, Bewell presents British natural history as a translational activity aimed at globalizing local natures by making them mobile, exchangeable, comparable, and representable. In the period leading up to the formulation of evolutionary theory, Bewell shows, colonial writers responded to a world in which new natures were coming into being while others disappeared. Ultimately, this book demonstrates that--far from being separate from the dominant concerns of British imperial culture--nature was integrally bound up with the business of empire.
Reviewed by Kevin Hutchings.





BOSSERHOFF, BJORN
RADICAL CONTRA-DICTION: COLERIDGE, REVOLUTION, APOSTASY (Cambridge, 2016) 301 pp. -

This study of Coleridge's reactions to the French Revolution closely examines the influence of Southey on his political coming of age as well as Hazlitt’s prosecution of him for apostasy later on. While charting his trajectory from "radical" to "conservative," Bosserhof challenges the very notion that these labels can be applied to him.






BRADSHAW, MICHAEL, ED.
DISABLING ROMANTICISM (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016) xv + 215 pp. -

This book investigates the presence of disability in British Romantic literature, as subject matter, as metaphorical theme, and as lived experience. Authors discussed include William Blake, Lord Byron, Ann Batten Cristall, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, George Darley, Richard Payne Knight, William Gilpin, Mary Robinson, Mary Shelley, Robert Southey, and William Wordsworth.
Reviewed by .





BRIEFEL, AVIVA
THE RACIAL HAND IN THE VICTORIAN IMAGINATION (Cambridge, 2015) -

Though the hands of colonized subjects--such as South Asian craftsmen and Congolese children--could not plausibly be used to explain ethnicity, fin-de-siècle narratives sought to show how non-white hands might offer crucial means of identifying and theorizing racial identity. Consequently, severed hands served as "human tools" that could be used in a number of political, aesthetic, and ideological contexts.
To be reviewed by Grace Moore.





BROGLIO, RON
BEASTS OF BURDEN BIOPOLITICS, LABOR, AND ANIMAL LIFE IN BRITISH ROMANTICISM (SUNY, April 2017) xiii + 178 pp. -

Using literature, art, and cultural texts of the period, Broglio recaptures the dawn of biopolitics, when commons were enclosed and the state began to regulate biological life and its abilities. He considers how data collection--such as censuses and ordinance surveys--turned everyday life into citizenship and nationalism and how labor class poets and artists recorded and resisted the burden of this new biopolitical life.
Reviewed by Alastair Hunt.





BURKETT, ANDREW
ROMANTIC MEDIATIONS MEDIA THEORY AND BRITISH ROMANTICISM (SUNY, 2016) 212 pp. -

Burkett links theories of storing and processing media with classic texts by William Blake, Lord Byron, John Keats, Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, and others. By examining such texts, Burkett reveals the role they play in the genesis of technical media systems: of new media environments and platforms of photography, phonography, moving images, and digital media.
To be reviewed by Randall Sessler.





CARR, JULIE AND JEFFREY ROBINSON, EDS.
ACTIVE ROMANTICISM: THE RADICAL IMPULSE IN NINETEENTH-CENTURY AND CONTEMPORARY POETIC PRACTICE (University of Alabama, January 15, 2015) -

Challenging the notion that poetic innovation in twentieth-century modernism took arms against a supposedly enervated "late-Romantic" poetry of the nineteenth century, contributors to this volume trace the fundamental, dynamic continuities between the poetic and political radicalism of Romanticism and the experimental movements in poetry from the late-nineteenth-century to the present day.
Reviewed by George Bornstein.





COGHLAN, J. MICHELLE
SENSATIONAL INTERNATIONALISM: THE PARIS COMMUNE AND THE REMAPPING OF AMERICAN MEMORY IN THE LONG NINETEENTH CENTURY (Edinburgh, 2016) 232 pp. -

Taking the Paris Commune as a key to the relationship between France and the United States in the long nineteenth century, Coghlan reads a range of literary works, from periodical poetry and boys' adventure fiction to the writings of Henry James, as well as studying other media such as panoramas and Coney Island pyrotechnic shows. He thereby shows how a foreign revolution came back to life as a domestic commodity, and why for decades another nation's memory came to feel so much our own.
To be reviewed by Dean de la Motte.





CRACIUN, ADRIANA
WRITING ARCTIC DISASTER: AUTHORSHIP AND EXPLORATION (Cambridge, April 2016) -

Responding to the 2014 discovery John Franklin's ship Erebus in the Northwest Passage, this book considers the Victorian conflation of exploration and disaster. In so doing, it ranges from archives of the Hudson's Bay Company and the nationalist Admiralty to illustrated books and exhibitions of disaster relics in the Victorian era.
To be reviewed by Annaliese Clayton.





CROSS, ASHLEY J.
MARY ROBINSON AND THE GENESIS OF ROMANTICISM: LITERARY DIALOGUES AND DEBTS, 1784-1821 (Routledge, 2016) 296 pp. -

Besides gaining fame as an actress, celebrity, poet, and novelist, Cross argues, Robinson shaped Romantic writing with literary dialogues that make Romantic discourse essentially interactive and conversational, not the work of original geniuses working in isolation.
Reviewed by Stephanie Russo.





DAMKJAER, MARIA
TIME, DOMESTICITY AND PRINT CULTURE IN NINETEENTH-CENTURY BRITAIN (Palgrave, 2016) vii + 192 pp. -

Examining novels by Dickens and Gaskell along with periodicals, cookbooks, and albums, Damkjær argues that the material form of these texts gave domesticity a temporal as well as spatial dimension.
To be reviewed by Katherine Malone.





DAVIES, REBECCA
WRITTEN MATERNAL AUTHORITY AND EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY EDUCATION IN BRITAIN-EDUCATING BY THE BOOK (Ashgate, 2014) x + 171 pp. -

Examining novels, fiction for children, conduct literature, and educative and political tracts by Samuel Richardson, Sarah Fielding, Mary Wollstonecraft, Maria Edgeworth, Ann Martin Taylor and Jane Austen, Davies shows how the discourse of maternal authority is modified in different genres to generate various versions of ideal educational methods.
Reviewed by Laura Kirkley.





EVANS, SAMANTHA, ED.
DARWIN AND WOMEN: A SELECTION OF LETTERS (Cambridge, 2017) xxviii + 270 pp -

Including a large number of hitherto unpublished letters between members of Darwin's family and their friends, this selection of Darwin's correspondence with women--a sex whose intelligence he famously discussed in Descent of Man--ranges from topics such as botany and zoology to marriage and servants.
Reviewed by George Levine.





FAULKES, ANTHONY
THE LIFE AND WORKS OF JAMES EASSON, THE DUNDEE PEOPLE'S POET (Dundee: Anthony Faulkes, 2016) 181 pp. -

Up to now a virtually unknown writer, James Easson (1833-1865) was a self-educated house-painter in Dundee. He published privately a small volume of poetry (25 poems over 56 pages), but much of the book is about his contributions to the Dundee People's Journal in the 1850s and 1860s. These comprise nine short stories, eleven poems, and numerous "sketches," essays and letters, mostly about life in Dundee during his lifetime. It is intended for general readers interested in Dundee culture in the 19th century as well as academics interested in 19th century periodical literature (or working class literature). This book includes reprints of all Easson's extant writings.






FELDMAN, PAULA, ED.
PERU AND PERUVIAN TALES (Broadview, 2015) 241 pp. -

First published in 1784, Helen Maria Williams's epic poem Peru tells the story of Pizarro's brutal conquest of the Incas and their subsequent revolt against Spain. But in the final version of the poem, published in 1823, Williams's "timid" muse reflects the cultural shift that had taken place in England between those two dates. This edition includes both versions of the poem along with Williams's literary sources, other poetic works, and excerpts from contemporary reviews.
Reviewed by Deborah Kennedy.





GIBSON, RICHARD HUGHES
FORGIVENESS IN VICTORIAN LITERATURE: GRAMMAR, NARRATIVE, AND COMMUNITY (Bloomsbury Academic, 2015) xiv + 169 pp. -

Examining novels, poems, and essays by writers such as Dickens, Hardy, Wilde, and George Eliot, Gibson shows how delicate negotiations between rival ethical and religious frameworks complicated the traditional powers of forgiveness: to create or restore community and, within narratives, to offer resolution and closure. This study also suggests that Victorian literature offers new perspectives on the ongoing debate about the possibility and potency of forgiving.
Reviewed by John R. Reed.





GILMARTIN, KEVIN
WILLIAM HAZLITT: POLITICAL ESSAYIST (Oxford, 2015) 368 pp. -

Contesting the view that partisan passion undermined Hazlitt's aesthetic judgment and compromised his celebrated disinterestedness, Gilmartin restores politics to the center of his achievement as a critic and essayist. While acknowledging his desire to reflect critically on radical politics and express his own doubts about social progress, Gilmartin stresses his commitment to oppositional political expression and his constructive alignment with the early 19th century popular form movement.
To be reviewed by James Whitehead.





GOLINSKI, JAN
THE EXPERIMENTAL SELF: HUMPRHEY DAVY AND THE MAKING OF A MAN OF SCIENCE (Chicago, 2016) 256 pp. -

Tracking the steps by which Davy became the foremost chemist of his day, Golinski argues that his life is best understood as a prolonged process of self-experimentation.
Reviewed by Jon Klancher.





GRENNAN, SIMON AND LAURENCE GROVE, EDS.
TRANSFORMING ANTHONY TROLLOPE: DISPOSSESSION, VICTORIANISM AND NINETEENTH-CENTURY WORD AND IMAGE (Leuven/Cornell, 2015) -

This cross-disciplinary collection of essays on nineteenth-century history, adaptation, word/image and Victorianism reflects on Simon Grennan's 2015 graphic novel Dispossession--an adaptation of Anthony Trollope's 1879 novel John Caldigate--as well as entering current debates on the cultural uses of history and the theorization of remediation, illustration, and narrative drawing.
To be reviewed by Michelle Keown.





GREVEN, DAVID
GENDER PROTEST AND SAME-SEX DESIRE IN ANTEBELLUM AMERICAN LITERATURE: MARGARET FULLER, EDGAR ALLAN POE, NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE, AND HERMAN MELVILLE (Ashgate, 2014) viii + 250 pp. -

Showing how major American authors sought to represent same-sex desire and "gender protest" before the Civil War, Greven argues that they not only explored these taboo subjects but also used a variety of rhetorical means for expressing the inexpressible.
Reviewed by Laura Zebuhr.





GURTON-WACHTER, LILY
WATCHWORDS: ROMANTICISM AND THE POETICS OF ATTENTION (Stanford, 2016) -

Revisiting British Romanticism as a poetics of heightened attention when Britain feared a possible French invasion, this book considers the variety of forces competing for--or commanding--attention in the period. In close readings of Blake, Coleridge, Cowper, Keats, Charlotte Smith, and Wordsworth, Romanticism is shown to participate in an ongoing tradition of war literature which, rather than give testimony to or represent warfare, uses rhythm and verse to experiment with how and what we attend to during times of war.






HACK, DANIEL
REAPING SOMETHING NEW: AFRICAN AMERICAN TRANSFORMATIONS OF VICTORIAN LITERATURE (Princeton, 2016) 304 pp. -

Tackling fraught but fascinating issues of cultural borrowing and appropriation, this book shows how central figures in African American literary and intellectual history--such as Frederick Douglass, Charles Chesnutt, and W.E.B. Du Bois--leveraged Victorian literature to claim a distinctive voice and construct their own literary tradition. Hack also sheds new light on both canonical and little-read works by Dickens, Eliot, Tennyson, and other Victorian authors.
To be reviewed by Vanessa Dickerson.





HALL, DEWEY W., ED.
ROMANTIC ECOCRITICISM: ORIGINS AND LEGACIES (Rowman & Littlefield / Lexington, 2016) 310 pp. -

Ranging between scientific and literary treatments of natural history as well as between England, Europe, and America, this book links figures such as William Wordsworth and Henry David Thoreau, Charles Darwin and Ralph Waldo Emerson, Thomas Malthus and Lord Byron, and John Clare and Aldo Leopold.
Reviewed by Alan Bewell.





HARRINGTON, EMILY
SECOND PERSON SINGULAR: LATE VICTORIAN WOMEN POETS AND THE BONDS OF VERSE (Virginia, 2014) 248 pp. -

Emily Harrington offers a new history of women's poetry at the turn of the century that breaks from conventional ideas of nineteenth-century lyric, which focus on individual subjectivity. She argues that women poets conceived of lyric as an intersubjective genre, one that seeks to establish relations between subjects rather than to constitute a subject in isolation.
Reviewed by Jill Ehnenn.





HELSINGER, ELIZABETH K.
POETRY AND THE THOUGHT OF SONG IN NINETEENTH-CENTURY BRITAIN (Virginia, 2015) 256 pp. -

While considering poets long described as "musical"--such as Tennyson, Hopkins, and Swinburne--Helsinger also examines the role of song in the work of poets fascinated with visual art: Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Morris, and Christina Rossetti. By attending to the formal practices of these poets, the music they heard, and the stories and myths from which each forged a poetics that aspired to the condition of music, Helsinger suggests new ways to think about the nature and form of the lyric in the nineteenth century.
Reviewed by Michael Allis.





HOLMES, JOHN AND SHARON RUSTON, EDS.
THE ROUTLEDGE RESEARCH COMPANION TO NINETEENTH-CENTURY BRITISH LITERATURE AND SCIENCE (Routledge, 2017) 450 pp. -

To cover the full range of literary engagements with science in the long nineteenth century, 27 scholars consider how science affected different genres of writing and weigh the importance of individual scientific disciplines and concepts within literary culture.
To be reviewed by George Levine.





JAFFE, AUDREY
THE VICTORIAN NOVEL DREAMS OF THE REAL: CONVENTIONS AND IDEOLOGY (Oxford, 2016) 200 pp. -

Re-reading novels by Eliot, Dickens, Trollope, Hardy, and Collins, and re-considering concepts long used to define "classic" realism and the realist novel, Jaffe argues that such conventions produce not realism but fantasies of the real: not what "is" real but what each novel wishes to represent.
To be reviewed by Mario Ortiz-Robles.





KENNEDY, J. GERALD
STRANGE NATION: LITERARY NATIONALISM AND CULTURAL CONFLICT IN THE AGE OF POE (Oxford, 2016) 472 pp. -

Highlighting Poe's disdain for literary nationalism and examining counter-nationalistic narratives by fugitive slaves, Native Americans, and defiant women, this book shows how writers like Poe, Irving, Cooper, and Catharine M. Sedgwick wrestled with the imperative to revise history and produce national fable.
To be reviewed by Terence Whelan.





LEGETTE, CASIE
REMAKING ROMANTICISM: THE RADICAL POLITICS OF THE EXCERPT (Palgrave, 2017) ix + 245 pp. -

This book shows how British Romantic literature--ranging from Godwin's Caleb Williams to the poems of Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Shelley--was excerpted by radical political papers in nineteenth century Britain. In this way, LeGette argues, radical publishers and editors remade both texts and authors.
Reviewed by Ian Newman.





MACDONALD, TARA
THE NEW MAN, MASCULINITY AND MARRIAGE IN THE VICTORIAN NOVEL (Pickering & Chatto, February 2015) c. 256 pp. -

Though the term 'New Man' was not coined until 1894, this study locates earlier examples in the novels of Charles Dickens, Anne Brontë , George Eliot and George Gissing. MacDonald shows how Victorian writers used this figure to reassess masculine behaviour and re-imagine the marriage-plot in light of wider social changes.
Reviewed by Jacob Jewusiak.





NERSESSIAN, ANAHID
UTOPIA, LIMITED: ROMANTICISM AND ADJUSTMENT (Harvard, 2015) 280 pp. -

With the aid of Blake, Wordsworth, and Keats among others, this book redefines utopianism as a positive investment in limitations. Linking Romantic aesthetics to the ecological imperative to live within our means, Nersessian lays out a program of "adjustment" that applies the lessons of art to the rigors of life on an imperiled planet.
Reviewed by Samantha Harvey.





POLLAK, VIVIAN R.
OUR EMILY DICKINSONS AMERICAN WOMEN POETS AND THE INTIMACIES OF DIFFERENCE (Penn, 2016) 368 pp. -

After first considering how Dickinson's originality struck her nineteenth-century audiences, including Mabel Loomis Todd, her first editor, Pollak shows how Dickinson came to be seen in the twentieth century, especially by Marianne Moore, Sylvia Plath, and Elizabeth Bishop. Reading a wide range of historically specific primary sources as well as poems, Pollak probes the ambivalence that nineteenth- and twentieth-century women poets felt toward a literary tradition that overvalued the inwardness of lyric and undervalued the power of social connection.






RAFAEL, VICENTE L.
MOTHERLESS TONGUES: THE INSURGENCY OF LANGUAGE AMID WARS OF TRANSLATION (Duke, April 2016), 272 pp. -

Rafael examines the vexed relationship between language and history as seen through the work of translation in the context of empire, revolution, and academic scholarship in the Philippines, the United States, and beyond.






RYAN, SUSAN M.
THE MORAL ECONOMIES OF AMERICAN AUTHORSHIP: REPUTATION, SCANDAL, AND THE NINETEENTH-CENTURY LITERARY MARKETPLACE (Oxford, 2016) 232 pp. -

Examining writers such as James Fenimore Cooper, Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Beecher Stowe, this book shows how their moral character became a kind of literary property within mid-nineteenth-century America's expanding print marketplace, shaping the construction, promotion, and reception of texts as well as of literary reputations.






SMITH, PHILIP E., ED.
OSCAR WILDE'S HISTORICAL CRITICISM NOTEBOOK (Oxford, 26 November 2016) 200 pp. -

Presenting the newly transcribed and annotated text of the notebook Wilde used in composing his first post-graduate essay, Historical Criticism, written in 1879, this edition shows him not only drawing materials from a wide range of ancient and modern historians and philosophers but also drafting passages for his essay.
Reviewed by Peter Womack.





SODERMAN, MELISSA
SENTIMENTAL MEMORIALS: WOMEN AND THE NOVEL IN LITERARY HISTORY (Stanford, 2014) -

Synthesizing the history of the novel, women's literary history, and book history, Sodeman revisits the critical frameworks through which we have understood the history of literature. Novels by Sophia Lee, Ann Radcliffe, Charlotte Smith, and Mary Robinson, she argues, offer ways of rethinking some of the key literary concepts of the later eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, from genius and originality to the rise of an English canon.
To be reviewed by Julie Shaffer.





STALEY, JESSICA
EVOLUTION AND IMAGINATION IN VICTORIAN CHILDREN'S LITERATURE (Cambridge, 2016) -

After Darwin's Origin of Species, scientific, pedagogical, and literary works featuring beastly babes and wild children considered how our ancestors evolved and what children must do in order to repeat this progression to humanity. Exploring fictions by Rudyard Kipling, Lewis Carroll, Frances Hodgson Burnett, Charles Kingsley, and Margaret Gatty, Jessica Straley argues that Victorian children's literature not only adopted this new taxonomy of the animal child, but also suggested ways to complete the child's evolution.
To be reviewed by Stephen Prickett.





TALLY, ROBERT Y., JR.
POE AND THE SUBVERSION OF AMERICAN LITERATURE: SATIRE, FANTASY, CRITIQUE (Bloomsbury, 2014) -

Using satire and fantasy, Tally argues, to poke fun at an emergent nationalist discourse circulating in the United States, Poe's work undermines the earnest attempts to establish a distinctively national literature in the nineteenth century and also subtly subverts the tenets of an institutionalized American Studies in the twentieth century. Through his satirical critique of national culture and his otherworldly projection of a postnational space of the imagination, Poe establishes a subterranean, nomadic, and altogether worldly literary practice.






TAMBLING, JEREMY
DICKENS' NOVELS AS POETRY: ALLEGORY AND LITERATURE OF THE CITY (Routledge , November 24, 2015) 238 pp. -

Working from Dickens's earliest writings to the latest, combining theory with close analysis of texts, Tambling argues that Dickens constructs an urban poetry linked to the dream-life of characters who both can and cannot awake to fuller, different consciousness. Drawing on Walter Benjamin, Lacan, and Derrida, Tambling shows how Dickens writes a new and comic poetry of the city as well as a secret, unconscious autobiography.
To be reviewed by Elana Gomel.





TATTERSDILL, WILL
SCIENCE, FICTION, AND THE FIN-DE-SIÈCLE PERIODICAL PRESS (Cambridge, 2016), viii + 220pp -

Exploring the interactions between literature and science in late nineteenth-century periodical literature, Tattersdill shows how they begot what we now call "science fiction." While highlighting the work of H.G. Wells, Tattersdill also shows how various periodical stories about such things as Martian communication and X-rays played a crucial part in developing this new genre.
Reviewed by Laurence Davies.





VAN DAM, FREDERIK
ANTHONY TROLLOPE'S LATE STYLE: VICTORIAN LIBERALISM AND LITERARY FORM (Edinburgh, 2016) 256 pp. -

Exploring the relation between Victorian liberalism and Trollope's stylistic innovations, Van Dam shows how Trollope's creation of this new, impersonal aesthetic sprang from a desire to intervene in contemporary debates on topics such as suburban sociability and marginalist economics, colonialism and national sovereignty, educational and jurisprudential reforms.
To be reviewed by Deborah Morse.





WESTOVER, PAUL AND ANN WIERDA ROWLAND, EDS.
TRANSATLANTIC LITERATURE AND AUTHOR LOVE IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016) xiii + 371 pp. -

This book argues that readers on both sides of the Atlantic shaped the contours of international 'English' in the 1800s by expressing love for books and authors in a wide range of media and social practices.
Reviewed by Julia Hansen.



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