Department of English

University of Toronto

J - P Bookshelf

Faculty Bookshelf - Alphabetical by Author's Surname 

J | K | L | M | N | O | P


Jackson_ImmortalityH. J. Jackson
Those Who Write for Immortality: Romantic Reputations and the Dream of Lasting Fame
Yale University Press, 2015

This book was first conceived as an attempt at comparative reputation history. Reception is normally presented as the story of critical or cultural response to a single writer or work over time, but if two or three cases could be considered at a time, the individual would be put into perspective and general trends might emerge. Specifically, I hoped to work out why some writers succeeded spectacularly while others whose work had seemed very like theirs in their day had failed and fallen into oblivion. The core of this book is still reputation history, some of the great names of Romantic literature being grouped with lesser known or lost ones: Wordsworth with Crabbe and Southey; Austen with Scott and Brunton; Keats with Hunt and Cornwall; and Blake with Clare and Bloomfield.

As I worked on the reputation histories, however, one factor began to assume unexpected prominence. The writers' own attitudes to writing made a difference not only to themselves but also to publishers, reviewers, and readers in their afterlives, especially if they were looking beyond the present and aiming at eternal fame. Therefore the framework for the case studies is the concept of literary immortality itself--how it differs from other kinds of fame, how it influences writers' choices as they work, and how it subtly governed the judgment of gatekeeper critics in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Marginalia VIH. J. Jackson and George Whalley, eds.
S. T. Coleridge: Marginalia Volumes 3-6
Princeton University Press, 1992-2001

Though he has often been represented as an idle man who failed to produce what was expected of him, Samuel Taylor Coleridge was in fact a versatile writer who published in many fields--for example poetry, drama, criticism, theology, science, medicine, journalism, and political theory. The recently completed standard scholarly edition of his Collected Works fills 34 volumes, besides ten volumes of notebooks and six more of letters. Six volumes in the series are dedicated to his marginalia, that is, notes written in the margins of books, which are organized alphabetically from Abbt to Zwick following the names of the authors. These notes constitute a rich source of information about Coleridge's interests and habits of thought as well as about the intellectual climate in which he lived. Lately they have attracted the attention of historians of the book and of reading. The project of the collected edition was master-minded by a Canadian scholar, Professor Kathleen Coburn of the University of Toronto, who also established the Coleridge Collection--a collection of books and papers associated with Coleridge, second only to the holdings of the British Library in London--at Victoria College, where it continues to grow as a valuable archival resource for Romanticists and students of literature in English.

Marginalia H. J. Jackson
Marginalia: Readers Writing in Books
Yale University Press, 2001

Working closely as an editor with the famous marginalia of Coleridge got me interested in the whole phenomenon of writing in books and I started to collect other examples from about 1700 to the present, notes by unknown or unidentified readers as well as by celebrated practitioners like Blake, Keats, Macaulay, and Nabokov. Though the habit of writing notes in books is generally frowned on today, for centuries it was encouraged as a useful way of supplementing and activating the words on the page. This preliminary study is not a history, however, but an account of marginalia as a genre, viewed from different aspects. It does sketch out a history but it also describes a geography of readers' notes--what kinds of notes typically appear in what spaces of the book. It provides examples of children's notes, and of the obsessive behaviour of some book owners (or borrowers). It reflects on the modern taboo against writing in books. It surveys many styles of note- writing, and examines a handful of special cases in detail.

Romantic ReadersH. J. Jackson
Romantic Readers: The Evidence of Marginalia
Yale University Press, 2005

The first book on marginalia having made a sweeping survey of the genre, the second is devoted to a specific time and place--Britain in the Romantic Period, about 1790 to 1830--and aims to demonstrate the potential value of readers' notes as historical documents. The period was chosen because it went through a great increase in readership and a related boom in publishing. It was also a high-water mark in the history of manuscript annotation. Since writing in books was encouraged for various reasons, being regarded as a privilege of ownership but at the same time as a custodial responsibility, practically everyone who read books also occasionally wrote in them, so the surviving records are unusually rich. This book considers the common environment of readers in Britain at the time: the publishing system, the relationship between mainstream presses and the influential periodical reviews, the cost of books, the sharing of books, the fashion for reading and literary conversation. Then it describes different ways in which readers put their books to use for daily work, for socializing, and for show. The accumulated example of anonymous or historically unimportant readers puts into perspective the behaviour of some of the best- known annotators of the time--Walpole, Blake, Piozzi, Coleridge, and Keats.

Audrey Jaffe
The Victorian Novel Dreams of the Real: C
onventions and IdeologyCover_Jaffe
Oxford University Press, 2016

This book argues that realism and fantasy in the Victorian realist novel are not opposed, but rather occupy the same space and are shaped by the same conventions. Revisiting and reconsidering key elements of realist novel theory (including metonymy; the insignificant detail; character interiority; the representation of everyday life and the idea of disillusionment), the book also discusses the representational strategies of works by Dickens, Eliot, Hardy, Trollope and Collins.  

 Audrey Jaffe
The Affective Life of the Average Man:
The Victorian Novel and the Stock-Market Graph
affectlifeThe Ohio State University Press, 2010

What do the Victorian novel and the stock-market graph have in common? In The Affective Life of the Average Man: The Victorian Novel and the Stock-Market Graph, Audrey Jaffe explores the influence on modern subjectivity of an economic and emotional discourse constructed by both the Victorian novel and the stock market. The book shows how the novel and the market define character as fundamentally vicarious, and how the graphs, tickers, and pulses that represent the stock market function for us, as the novel did for the Victorians, as both representation and source of collective expectations and emotions. A rereading of key Victorian texts, this volume is also a rereading of the relation between Victorian and contemporary culture, describing the way contemporary accounts of such phenomena as frauds, bubbles, and the economics of happiness reproduce Victorian narratives and assumptions about character.

Jaffe draws on the work of nineteenth- and twentieth-century economic and political theorists, popular discourse about the stock market, and novelistic representations of emotion and identity to offer new readings of George Eliot's Middlemarch, Anthony Trollope's The Prime Minister, and Charles Dickens's David Copperfield and Little Dorrit. Charting a new understanding of the relation between money, emotions, and identity, The Affective Life of the Average Man makes a significant contribution to Victorian studies, economic criticism, and the study of the history and representation of emotion.

Scenes of SympathyAudrey Jaffe
Scenes of Sympathy: Identity and Representation in Victorian Fiction
Cornell University Press, 2000

Scenes of Sympathy shows how representations of sympathy in Victorian fiction reveal and unsettle Victorian ideologies of identity. Readings of Dickens, Eliot, Wilde and others discuss the way Victorian spectacles of social difference construct middle class identity, and the way Victorian narratives of feeling pave the way for the sympathetic affinities of contemporary identity politics.

Vanishing PointsAudrey Jaffe
Vanishing Points: Dickens, Narrative, and the Subject of Omniscience

University of California Press, 1991

Vanishing Points uses Dickens's novels and sketches to redefine narrative omniscience and discuss its implications for the construction of Victorian subjectivity. The book describes the construction of omniscience through a series of oppositions: between privacy and publicity, sympathy and irony, self and other, and shows how omniscience attempts to transcend the boundaries of individual consciousness by constructing them elsewhere: in characters.

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    Smaro KamboureliCritical_Collaborations
Co-ed. with Christl Verduyn
Critical Collaborations: Indigeneity, Diaspora, and Ecology in Canadian Literary Studies
Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2014

Critical Collaborations: Indigeneity, Diaspora, and Ecology in Canadian Literary Studies is the third volume of essays produced as part of the TransCanada conferences project. The essays gathered in Critical Collaborations constitute a call for collaboration and kinship across disciplinary, political, institutional, and community borders. They are tied together through a simultaneous call for resistance—to Eurocentrism, corporatization, rationalism, and the fantasy of total systems of knowledge—and a call for critical collaborations. These collaborations seek to forge connections without perceived identity—linking concepts and communities without violating the differences that constitute them, seeking epistemic kinships while maintaining a willingness to not-know. In this way, they form a critical conversation between seemingly distinct areas and demonstrate fundamental allegiances between diasporic and indigenous scholarship, transnational and local knowledges, legal and eco-critical methodologies. Links are forged between Indigenous knowledge and ecological and social justice, creative critical reading, and ambidextrous epistemologies, unmaking the nation through translocalism and unsettling histories of colonial complicity through a poetics of relation. Together, these essays reveal how the critical methodologies brought to bear on literary studies can both challenge and exceed disciplinary structures, presenting new forms of strategic transdisciplinarity that expand the possibilities of Canadian literary studies while also emphasizing humility, complicity, and the limits of knowledge

Our Translated World

Chelva Kanaganayakam, ed.
In Our Translated World: Contemporary Global Tamil Poetry
TSAR Publications, 2013

In Our Translated World brings together, for the first time, in bilingual format, a translation of poems written in Tamil, from around the world where Tamils, over a period of several decades, have settled. The poems were written over the last three decades, and since modernity shapes contemporary perspectives in important ways, the struggle between modernity and tradition looms large in this poetry. The transition from an oppressive plantation culture to urban spaces involves numerous concerns, and they find expression in the poetry of Malaysians and Singaporeans. In Tamil Nadu physical dislocation from, say, the rural to the urban, is not seen as traumatic. More problematic, however, is the force of tradition that refuses to change with the times. For Sri Lankans, the frame is political upheaval and its consequent social and cultural disintegration. The poets who chose to live in Sri Lanka and those who moved to the West might point to different perspectives, but both are conscious of dramatic changes in their social and cultural worlds. Taken together, these poems offer an exciting and insightful representation of contemporary global Tamil experience.

Chelva Kanaganayakam, ed.Arbiters
Arbiters of a National Imaginary: Essays on Sri Lanka
Colombo: International Centre for Ethnic Studies, 2008.

This collection brings together a number of thought-providing essays, written by academic, critics, and writers all of whom are concerned with the multiple ways in social,cultural and political forces intersect in contemporary Sri Lanka.The essays move across a range of topics and accommodate several disciplines, But The common focus remains contemporary Sri Lnka. Each contributor brings to the collection a new perspective on the way is conceptualized and imagined by different ethnic and religious communities.

Chelva KanaganayakamCounterrealism
Counterrealism and Indo-Anglian Fiction
Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press 2002

What do R.K. Narayan, G.V. Desani, Anita Desai, Zulfikar Ghose, Suniti Namjoshi, and Salman Rushdie have in common?

They represent Indian writing in English over five decades. Vilified by many cultural nationalists for not writing in native languages, they nonetheless present a critique of the historical and cultural conditions that promoted and sustained writing in English. They also have in common a counterrealist aesthetic that asks its own social, political, and textual questions.

This book is about the need to look at the tradition of Indian writing in English from the perspective of counterrealism. The departure from the conventions of mimetic writing not only challenges the limits of realism but also enables Indo-Anglian authors to access formative areas of colonial experience.

Kanaganayakam analyzes the fiction of writers who work in this vibrant Indo-Anglian tradition and demonstrates patterns of continuity and change during the last five decades. Each chapter draws attention to what is distinctive about the artifice in each author while pointing to the features that connect them. The book concludes with a study of contemporary writing and its commitment to non-mimetic forms

Keymer T. BookThomas Keymer, ed.
Prose Fiction in English from the Origins of Print to 1750
Oxford University Press, Forthcoming

A major reference work that brings together leading international specialists to explore the origins of printing in late fifteenth-century England, to the rise of the novel in the mid eighteenth century

Includes extensive coverage of European traditions of fiction and their influence on writers in English, with chapters on major writers such as Rabelais and Cervantes, and on genres including the ancient novel, chivalric romance, and Spanish rogue fiction

Tristram ShandyThomas Keymer, ed.
Laurence Sterne’s Tristram Shandy: A Casebook
Oxford University Press, 2006

The hospitality of Tristram Shandy to competing approaches and divergent readings is not a modern discovery, but in recent decades Sterne’s masterpiece has generated an unusually rich variety of critical accounts. With its focus on questions of reading and interpretation, language and meaning, textuality and fragmentation, and with its playful exploration of human subjectivity and the performance of identity or gender, the work is an obvious host for poststructuralist, psychoanalytic and other kinds of literary theory. New editorial and biographical work has stimulated fresh analysis of Sterne’s place in traditions and genres ranging from Menippean satire to the modern novel, and of his relationship to cultural and intellectual trends including sentimentalism, scepticism and philanthropy. This volume reprints ten of the best recent essays in five sections: Genres, Traditions, Intertexts; Public Performance and Print Culture; Language of the Body; Narrative, Reading, and Meaning; Politics and History.
Pamela in the MarketplaceThomas Keymer and Peter Sabor
Pamela in the Marketplace: Literary Controversy and Print Culture in Eighteenth-Century Britain and Ireland
Cambridge University Press, 2005

The best-selling novel of its time, Samuel Richardson’s Pamela (1740) provoked a swarm of responses: panegyrics and critiques, parodies and burlesques, piracies and sequels, comedies and operas. The controversy it inspired has become a standard point of reference in studies of the rise of the novel, the history of the book, and the emergence of consumer culture. In the first full-length study of a debate that “divided the World” (as the Danish playwright Holberg put it) between “Pamelists and Antipamelists,” Thomas Keymer and Peter Sabor offer a fresh and definitive account of the novel’s enormous cultural impact. Above all, they read the controversy as a market phenomenon, in which the writers and publishers involved were competing not only in struggles of interpretation and meaning but also in the larger and more pressing enterprise of selling print.

The Cambridge Companion to Elizabeth GaskellThomas Keymer and Jon Mee, eds.
The Cambridge Companion to English Literature, 1740-1830
Cambridge University Press, 2004

This volume offers an introduction to British literature that challenges the traditional divide between eighteenth-century and Romantic studies. Contributors explore the development of literary genres and modes through a period of rapid change, showing how literature was shaped by historical factors including the development of the book trade, the rise of literary criticism and the expansion of commercial society. The first part of the volume focuses on broad themes including taste and aesthetics, national identity and empire, and key cultural trends such as sensibility and the gothic. The second part pays close attention to the work of individual writers including Sterne, Blake, Barbauld, Austen and Clare, and to the role of literary circles such as the “Lake” and “Cockney” schools. The wide scope of the collection, juxtaposing canonical authors with those now gaining new attention from scholars, makes it indispensable reading for students of eighteenth-century literature and Romanticism.

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Civic London_AnneAnne Lancashire
Civic London to 1558 (3 volume set)
Boydell & Brewer, 2015

The variety and richness of early London's dramatic activity are extensively revealed here: both from the records of its civic government and livery companies, 1287 to 1558, and in a chronological appendix of information from other sources, such as national and local chronicles (written in Anglo-French, Latin, and English).

Civic London to 1558 adds substantially to the amount of published evidence of early drama in London. After the demise of the multi-day biblical play performed, regularly or occasionally, in the late fourteenth century at Clerkenwell, on the edge of the city, records begin to appear of the London companies (originally craft and trade guilds) paying players/actors to perform at annual company feasts. The records are at first largely of clerks' groups, and subsequently largely of troupes patronized by royalty and the aristocracy. The London troupes of Shakespeare's day descend from here. Also elaborate formal mummings (disguisings) were sent by the city to the court, and were performed as well in company halls. Grand theatrical spectacles were presented in the streets: at Midsummer, for formal royal entries through the city, and for mayoral inaugurations. This collection makes a strong contribution to the known evidence of these activities and of others as well.

Anne Lancashire is Professor Emerita of English at the University of Toronto; she has published extensively on medieval and early modern theatre and drama.

London Civic TheatreAnne Lancashire
London Civic Theatre: City Drama and Pageantry from Roman Times to 1558
Cambridge University Press, 2002, 2009

Civic theatre--drama and pageantry sponsored by city and town governing bodies--is prominent in histories of English provincial drama but has been largely ignored for pre-Elizabethan London. This book explodes the widely-held notion that significant London theatre arose only in the age of Shakespeare, when the first commercial playhouses were built there. It outlines the extent and types of early civic theatrical performance, specifically in London, from Roman times to Elizabeth I's accession to the throne in 1558, focusing on Roman amphitheatre shows, medieval and early Tudor plays, mummings, royal entries, and other kinds of street pageantry. With evidence from a multitude of primary sources and extensive use of early chronicle histories, the book raises new questions about this urban, largely political theatre which provided an important foundation for the work of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Included is a selection of early civic records of theatrical activity, and a reference list of major (and, for comparative purposes, a few minor) royal and other formal entries into London 1400-1558.

Forgetful MusesIan Lancashire
Primal Testament
Seraphim Editions, 2016

Primal Testament is an epic poem about DNA, the inventor of life and death, and about the extinct and living species that are its children. They include the black bear and the sparrow, the first chordates Haikouella and Pikaia Gracilens, E-Coli, the flatworm, geologist Charles Lyell, chemist Rosalind Franklin, and the three hominins who 3.7 million years ago walked at Laetoli, Tanzania. Their story of lost paradise is told by two voices, a muse of great authority, and an early 21st-century man humbled by its tale and language.

 Primal Testament is learned, playful, humorous and contemplative, as well as scientifically and poetically rich in ways that will astound the reader. The focus is not only on the evolution of life but also on stories of scientists who contributed to this knowledge, as well as geological and climactic events (the impact of tsunamis, plate-shifting, the bacteria in our and all guts). It is also – as all great poems must be – about sex and about God.

 – Chantel Lavoie, Author and Associate Professor, Royal Military College of Canada

Magisterial and monumental, Primal Testament, Ian Lancashire’s debut volume of poetry, aims at nothing less than a history of the earth compressed into the layers of ten poems. The volume twists like DNA itself, a double helix of feeling and thought in multiple voices buoyed by verse structures. Rosalind Franklin, the discoverer of DNA, narrates her story; a boy grows up in Manitoba; Mary Leakey discovers fossilized footprints; a flatworm considers its karma; and eons of geological time condense to a still point in Lancashire’s splendid, complex, but lucid work. Though he gestures broad and wide, each poem ends in a lyrical moment that seems to buttress all of time. One of Canada’s premier literary scholars, Lancashire now creates a work of personal depth, showing us that poet lived in the critic all along. 

 – Molly Peacock, Editor, The Best Canadian Poetry in English

 Forgetful MusesIan Lancashire
Forgeful Muses: Reading the Author in the Text
University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division, 2010

How can we understand and analyze the primarily unconscious process of writing? In this groundbreaking work of neuro-cognitive literary theory, Ian Lancashire maps the interplay of self-conscious critique and unconscious creativity.

Forgetful Muses shows how a writer's own 'anonymous,' that part of the mind that creates language up to the point of consciousness, is the genesis of thought. Those thoughts are then articulated by an author's inner voice and become subject to critique by the mind's 'reader-editor.' The 'reader-editor' engages with the 'anonymous,' which uses this information to formulate new ideas. Drawing on author testimony, cybernetics, cognitive psychology, corpus linguistics, text analysis, the neurobiology of mental aging, and his own experiences, Lancashire's close readings of twelve authors, including Caedmon, Chaucer, Coleridge, Joyce, Christie, and Atwood, serve to illuminate a mystery we all share.

Katherine R. LarsonThe Matter of Song in Early Modern England
The Matter of Song in Early Modern England
Oxford Press, 2019

Examines traces of song performance across a wide range of literary texts and cultural documents in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Features a wealth of literary and musical examples that testify to women's active involvement in early modern musical culture in England. 

Mary WrothKatherine R. Larson
Re-Reading Mary Wroth
Palgrave Macmillan, February 2015

2016 will mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of Reading Mary Wroth, a groundbreaking collection that helped to propel interest in Wroth before modern editions of most of her texts were available. A surge of critical interest in Wroth is now transforming our experiences of reading her. This volume charts opportunities for scholars and students to re-read Mary Wroth now that the necessity of reading her has been recognized. It also establishes new directions for the broadening field of early modern women's writing. In extending the work of the 1991 volume, Re-Reading Mary Wroth takes seriously the many different practices that emerge around the term "reading," including editing, performance, curating, pedagogy, scholarly and creative writing, and digital reproduction. The essays featured in this collection thus extend the boundaries of the "canon" of approaches to literature in much the same way that Wroth's "rediscovery" has helped to expand and destabilize the very notion of canonicity. In Re-Reading Mary Wroth, Wroth becomes a fruitful point of departure as much as a subject of analysis in her own right.

Gender and SongKatherine R. Larson
Gender and Song in Early Modern England
Ashgate, November, 2014

The study of women and gender offers some of the most vital and innovative challenges to current scholarship on the early modern period. For more than a decade now, Women and Gender in the Early Modern World has served as a forum for presenting fresh ideas and original approaches to the field. Interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary in scope, this Ashgate series strives to reach beyond geographical limitations to explore the experiences of early modern women and the nature of gender in Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa. We welcome proposals for both single-author volumes and edited collections which expand and develop this continually evolving field of study.

Early Modern Women in ConversationKatherine R. Larson
Early Modern Women in Conversation
Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011

To converse is, in its most fundamental sense, to engage with society. The potency of conversation as an early modern social networking tool is complicated, however, both by its gendered status in the period and by its conflation of verbal and physical interaction. Conversation was an embodied act that signified social intimacy, cohabitation, and even sexual intercourse. As such, conversation posed a particular challenge for women, whose virtuous reputation was contingent on sexual and verbal self-control. Early Modern Women in Conversation considers how five women writers from the prominent Sidney and Cavendish families negotiated the gendered interrelationship between conversation and the spatial boundaries delimiting conversational encounters to create opportunities for authoritative and socially transformative utterance within their texts. Conversation emerges in this book as a powerful rhetorical and creative practice that remaps women's relationship to space and language in early modern England.

The Neoprimitivist TurnVictor Li
The Neo-Primitivist Turn: Critical Reflections on Alterity, Culture, and Modernity
University of Toronto Press, 2006

In recent years the concept of 'the primitive' has been the subject of strong criticism; it has been examined, unpacked, and shown to signify little more than a construction or projection necessary for establishing the modernity of the West. The term 'primitive,' however, continues to surface in contemporary critical and cultural discourses, begging the question: Why does primitivism keep reappearing even after it has been uncovered as a modern myth?

In The Neo-primitivist Turn Victor Li argues that this contentious term was never completely banished and that it has in fact reappeared under new theoretical guises. An idealized conception of 'the primitive,' he contends, has come to function as the ultimate sign of alterity. Li focuses on the works of theorists such as Jean Baudrillard, Jean-Francois Lyotard, Marianna Torgovnick, Marshall Sahlins, and Jurgen Habermas in order to demonstrate that primitivism continues to be a powerful presence even in those works normally regarded as critical of the concept. Providing close readings of the ways in which the pre-modern or primitive is strategically deployed in contemporary critical writings, Li's interdisciplinary study is a timely and forceful intervention into current debates on the politics and ethics of otherness, the problems of cultural relativism, and the vicissitudes of modernity.

Modern Drama_LopezJeremy Lopez
Constructing the Canon of Early Modern Drama 
Cambridge University Press, 2014

For one hundred years the drama of Shakespeare's contemporaries has been consistently represented in anthologies, edited texts, and the critical tradition by a familiar group of about two dozen plays running from Kyd's Spanish Tragedy to Ford's 'Tis Pity She's a Whore by way of Dekker, Jonson, Middleton, and Webster. How was this canon created, and what ideological and institutional functions does it serve? What preceded it, and is it possible for it to become something else? Jeremy Lopez takes up these questions by tracing a history of anthologies of “non-Shakespearean” drama from Robert Dodsley's Select Collection of Old Plays (1744) through those recently published by Blackwell, Norton, and Routledge. Innovatively structured so as to both dramatize and critique conventions of anthologization and canonization, this book also presents provocative new readings of non-canonical plays in order to develop an argument about the mutually constitutive relationship between history and dramatic form.

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LordStrange (2)Sally-Beth MacLean and Lawrence Manley
Lord Strange’s Men and Their Plays
Yale University Press, 2014

For a brief period in the late Elizabethan Era an innovative company of players dominated the London stage. A fellowship of actors, Lord Strange’s Men established their reputation by concentrating on “modern matter” performed in a spectacular style, exploring new modes of impersonation, and deliberately courting controversy. Supported by their equally controversial patron, theater connoisseur, and potential claimant to the English throne Ferdinando Stanley, the company included Edward Alleyn, considered the greatest actor of the age, as well as George Bryan, Thomas Pope, Augustine Phillips, William Kemp, and John Hemings, who later joined William Shakespeare and Richard Burbage in the Lord Chamberlain’s Men. Though their theatrical reign was relatively short lived, Lord Strange’s Men helped to define the dramaturgy of the period, performing the plays of Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, Thomas Kyd, and others with their own distinctive flourish.

This book is the first complete account of the troupe and its influence on Elizabethan theater. Blending theater history and literary criticism, the authors paint a portrait of a unique community of performing artists, their intellectual ambitions and theatrical innovations, their business practices, and their engagements with the politics and religion of their time.

REED in ReviewSally-Beth MacLean and Audrey Douglas, eds.

REED in Review: Essays in Celebration of the First Twenty-Five Years

University of Toronto Press, 2006

In 2002, the Records of Early English Drama (REED) project marked its twenty-fifth anniversary with a special series of sessions at the International Medieval Congress at Leeds University. The REED sessions were designed to allow critical reflection on the past, present, and future of the project as it entered the twenty-first century. Thirteen essays amplifying the content of selected conference papers, and a fourteenth submitted at the editors’ invitation, make up REED in Review.

Contributors to the collection describe the conception and early years of REED, assess the project’s impact on recent and current scholarship, and anticipate or propose stimulating new directions for future research. Individual essays address a wide variety of subjects, from the impact of REED research on Shakespeare textual editing, Robin Hood, patronage, and Elizabethan theatre studies, to a thought provoking redefinition of ‘drama,’ details of recent ground-breaking research in Scottish records, and the broadening possibilities for editorial and research relationships with information technology. The editors’ introduction and a select bibliography, with commentary and a list of REED-related publications by editors and scholars from a variety of disciplines, make up the remainder of this landmark volume.

 Lynne Magnusson with David Schalkwyk, Eds. 

The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare's Language The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare's Language

Cambridge University Press, forthcoming June 2019

The power of Shakespeare's complex language - his linguistic playfulness, poetic diction and dramatic dialogue - inspires and challenges students, teachers, actors and theatre-goers across the globe. It has iconic status and enormous resonance, even as language change and the distance of time render it more opaque and difficult. The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare's Language provides important contexts for understanding Shakespeare's experiments with language and offers accessible approaches to engaging with it directly and pleasurably. Incorporating both practical analysis and exemplary readings of Shakespearean passages, it covers elements of style, metre, speech action and dialogue; examines the shaping contexts of rhetorical education and social language; test-drives newly available digital methodologies and technologies; and considers Shakespeare's language in relation to performance, translation and popular culture. The Companion explains the present state of understanding while identifying opportunities for fresh discovery, leaving students equipped to ask productive questions and try out innovative methods.

matusshock Jill L. Matus

Shock, Memory and the Unconscious in Victorian Fiction

Cambridge University Press, 2009

Jill Matus explores shock in Victorian fiction and psychology with startling results that reconfigure the history of trauma theory. Central to Victorian thinking about consciousness and emotion, shock is a concept that challenged earlier ideas about the relationship between mind and body. Although the new materialist psychology of the mid nineteenth century made possible the very concept of a wound to the psyche -- the recognition, for example, that those who escaped physically unscathed from train crashes or other overwhelming experiences might still have been injured in some significant way -- it was Victorian fiction, with its complex explorations of the inner life of the individual and accounts of upheavals in personal identity, that most fully articulated the idea of the haunted, possessed and traumatized subject. This wide-ranging book reshapes our understanding of Victorian theories of mind and memory and reveals the relevance of nineteenth-century culture to contemporary theories of trauma.

The Cambridge Companion to Elizabeth GaskellJill L. Matus, ed.

The Cambridge Companion to Elizabeth Gaskell

Cambridge University Press, 2006

In the last few decades, Elizabeth Gaskell has become a figure of growing importance in the field of Victorian literary studies. She produced work of great variety and scope in the course of a highly successful writing career that lasted for about twenty years from the mid-1840s to her unexpected death in 1865. A gifted story-teller, with a zest for anecdote, legend, and social observation, she was innovative and experimental in her use of genre, particularly in the realm of shorter fiction. She is significant also in the history of biography, where her controversial contribution, The Life of Charlotte Brontë, was instrumental in changing conceptions of that genre. Generations of readers have valued her for her geniality, sympathy and imaginative expressiveness, but critics are increasingly coming to acknowledge that her work is neither artless nor transparent. They are also granting growing recognition to her intellectuality, her familiarity with matters of scientific, economic, and theological enquiry, and her narrative sophistication. This Companion features chapters on individual novels as well as more general topics (Gaskell, gender and the family; Gaskell and social transformation; Gaskell and the Unitarian context). Edited by Jill Matus, with contributions from well-known scholars such as Patsy Stoneman, John Chapple, Linda K. Hughes, Audrey Jaffe, Susan Hamilton, Nancy Henry, Linda H. Peterson, Nancy S.Weyant, Marion Shaw, and Deirdre d’Albertis, the Companion to Elizabeth Gaskell will be invaluable for students and scholars of Gaskell and Victorian fiction.

 Jill L. Matus

Unstable Bodies: Victorian Representations of Sexuality and Maternity

Manchester University Press, 1995

Unstable Bodies is a wide-ranging and provocative book that uses bio-medical, social scientific and literary texts to interrogate Victorian concepts of sexual difference. Jill Matus departs from the usual critical focus on Victorian conceptions of the sexes as incommensurably different to emphasize instead the powerful effects in Victorian culture of ideas about sexual instability and approximation.

While formulations of mutable or ambiguous sexuality provoked fear and fascination, they also served Victorian middle-class ideology by offering scientific ways of constructing racial class and national identity in terms of the body.

Throughout this period fierce public debates raged around issues such as prostitution, infanticide, working-class sexuality, female reproduction, and domesticity. Drawing on texts by Elizabeth Gaskell (Mary Barton, Ruth) George Eliot (Adam Bede, Middlemarch) and the Brontës (Agnes Grey, Villete) as well as a range of non-canonical fictional texts, Matus explores the dialogue between literary and other discourses of sexuality. In a series of essays, linked by shared concerns and similar topics, she shows how literary, social and medical texts from the 1840s to the 1870s construct multiple and contesting versions of womanhood, motherhood and female sexuality. Avoiding large claims about the agency of literary texts, the essays in this book explore specific instances in which fictional texts rework and transform topical constructions of the “natural propensities” of women, in part confirming but also sometimes undermining and challenging the assertions about sexuality produced by other discourses. Unstable Bodies deepens our understanding of the way Victorians articulated problems concerning gender and sexual difference, many of which continue to engage us in the late twentieth century. It is an essential reference work for students and scholars working in Victorian literary and cultural studies, feminist studies and the history of sexuality.

Toni MorrisonJill L. Matus

Toni Morrison

Manchester University Press, 1998

Jill Matus approaches Morrison’s work as a form of cultural memory concerned with obscured or erased history. She argues that Morrison sees African American history—from the times of slavery to the continued racial oppressions of the twentieth century—as a history of traumatic experience, and explores how this powerful storyteller bears witness to a painful yet richly enlivening past. Since Morrison’s novels are known for their great lyric power, but often dwell on scenes of horror, Matus addresses the uneasy relations of memory, pain and pleasure in literature. In so doing she sheds new light on Morrison as a contemporary writer working at a time when literature is urgently being explored for its capacity to memorialize and testify.

Matus’s critical study highlights the political and historical contexts of this Nobel Laureate’s work, offers close readings of each of the novels, and concludes with a critical overview of the field of Morrison studies, which students will find extremely valuable.

Book cover.Alice Maurice

The Cinema and Its Shadow: Race and Technology in Early Cinema

University Of Minnesota Press, 2013

The Cinema and Its Shadow argues that race has defined the cinematic apparatus since the earliest motion pictures, especially at times of technological transition. In particular, the book explores how racial difference became central to the resolving of cinematic problems: the stationary camera, narrative form, realism, the synchronization of image and sound, and, perhaps most fundamentally, the immaterial image—the cinema’s “shadow,” which figures both the material reality of the screen image and its racist history.

Robert McGillBob- McGill--War is here

War is Here: The Vietnam War and Canadian Literature

McGill-Queen's UP, 2017

Canada did not fight in the Vietnam War, but the conflict seized the Canadian imagination with an energy that has persisted. In War Is Here, Robert McGill explains how the war contributed to a golden age for writing in Canada. As authors addressed the conflict, they helped to construct an enduring myth of Canada as liberal, hospitable, and humanitarian. For many writers, the war was one that Canadians could and should fight against, if not in person, then on the page.

In this first major account of war-related Canadian literature, McGill observes how celebrated books of the era channel Vietnam, sometimes in subtle but pervasive ways. He examines authors’ attempts to educate their readers about American imperialism and Canadian complicity, and he discusses how writers repeatedly used language evoking militarism and violence - from the figure of the United States as a rapist to the notion of Canada as a “peaceable kingdom” - in order to make Canadians feel more intensely about their country. McGill also addresses the recent spate of prize-winning Canadian novels about the war that have renewed Vietnam’s resonance in the wake of twenty-first-century conflicts involving America.

The MysteriesRobert McGill

The Mysteries 

McClelland & Stewart, 2004   

Alice Pederson has been missing for almost two years from the town of Sunshine, Ontario, and her family members have carried on despite their grief and frustration with a police investigation that has hit a dead end. But when remains are found along a nearby shoreline, a series of surprising events unfolds: one of the last people to see Alice alive leaves town; the local hockey coach is arrested and then crashes his four-seater plane during his escape; the insurance investigator begins to pursue the Pederson family’s claim for reasons of her own. Meanwhile, something out in the bush is making grisly attacks on farm animals, and Native groups are protesting the building of a henge on the grounds of Cam Usher’s wildlife park, an area they know to be a sacred burial site. Adding to the disquiet, an unknown traveller arrives one night carrying a weather-beaten notebook, with instructions to give it only to Alice Pederson.

Moving back and forth in time, and told from a variety of characters’ perspectives, The Mysteries explores the tangled web of relationships in a small town where it seems everyone has something to hide.

Robert McGill

Once We Had a CountryBook cover.

Knopf Canada, 2013   

In the summer of 1972, Maggie Dunne leaves the United States to settle with her boyfriend, Fletcher, on a farm near Niagara Falls. They’ve made the journey to keep him out of the draft, but they also have loftier plans—to start a commune and work the land.

As the summer passes, Maggie is haunted by the lack of word from her father, a missionary in the war-torn jungles of Laos. Then the US government announces the end of the draft, and Fletcher faces pressure from his family to return home. More people arrive at the farm, but they aren’t who anyone expected. Tensions threaten the commune, the neighbours are hostile, and Maggie finds herself negotiating the gap between ideals and reality, between who people want to be and who they actually are.

Just as her new life seems on the brink of falling apart, Maggie receives word from Laos that her father has disappeared. Suddenly, her future depends not only on keeping everyone at the farm together, but also on discovering the truth about her father’s actions and beliefs in the days before he vanished.

Robert McGill

The Treacherous Imagination

Columbus: Ohio State UP, 2013McGillTreacherousImagination.Cover

Many authors have been accused of betraying their loved ones by turning them into fictional characters. In The Treacherous Imagination, Robert McGill examines the ethics of writing such stories. He argues that while fiction has long appealed to readers with its narratives of private life, contemporary autobiographical fiction channels a widespread ambivalence about the value of telling all in a confessional age—an age in which fiction has an unprecedented power to leave people feeling libeled or exposed when they recognize themselves in it.

Observing that the interests of authors and their loved ones in such cases are often less divergent than they appear, McGill assess strategies by which both parties might use fiction not to hurt each other but to revise and revitalize intimacy. Discussing authors such as Philip Roth, Alice Munro, A. S. Byatt, and Hanif Kureishi, McGill questions whether people should always require exclusivity of each other with regard to the stories they tell about private life. Instead, authors and their intimates might jointly embrace fiction’s playful, transgressive qualities, even while reexamining the significance of that fiction’s intimations.

Naomi MorgensternWild  Child
Wild Child: Intensive Parenting and Posthumanist Ethics
University of Minnesota Press

Exploring how the figure of the “wild child” in contemporary fiction grapples with contemporary cultural anxieties about reproductive ethics and the future of humanity

Wild Child considers how twenty-first-century fiction imagines the decision to reproduce and the ethical challenges of posthumanist parenting. Naomi Morgenstern explores depictions of children and caregivers in extreme situations—from the violence of slavery and sexual captivity to accidental death and global apocalypse—in such works as Toni Morrison’s A Mercy, Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, and Denis Villeneuve’s film Prisoners.


A.F. Moritz

The New Measures Book cover of AF Mortiz' The New Measures

House of Anansi Press, 2012

Shortlisted for the Governor General's Literary Award: Poetry

The follow up to The Sentinel, winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize, A. F. Moritz's The New Measures is a bold collection of fiery, passionate, visionary, and fiercely singing new work. These poems make unique music, by turns tender and forceful, terrified and assured, grateful and enraged. They revel in pleasure, and the thirst for more pleasure. And they insist on the hope -- perhaps paradoxical, perhaps impossible, yet never extinguished -- for the perfection of a world both natural and human. The New Measures makes fear and grief into prophecy and joy at each turn of phrase. It is a brilliant new work from one of our greatest poets.

Andrea Most

Theatrical Liberalism TheatricalLiberalismAM2

NYU Press, 2013

For centuries, Jews lived in diverse countries with vibrant theatrical cultures, yet they were one of the few peoples without a sanctioned theatrical tradition of their own. In the modern era, however, Jews came to be among the most important creators of popular theatre and film in America. Why? In Theatrical Liberalism, Andrea Most illustrates how American Jews used theatre to navigate encounters with modern culture, negotiating a position for themselves within and alongside Protestant liberalism by reimagining key aspects of traditional Judaism as theatrical. Discussing works from the Hebrew Bible to The Jazz Singer and Death of a Salesman, Most situates American popular culture in the religious traditions that informed the worldviews of its practitioners. Offering a comprehensive history of the role of Judaism in the creation of American entertainment, Theatrical Liberalism re-examines the distinction between the secular and the religious, providing a new way of understanding both modern Jewish culture and liberalism, as well as their crucial contributions to a pluralist society. With extensive scholarship and compelling evidence, Theatrical Liberalism shows how the Jewish worldview that permeates American culture has reached far beyond the Jews who created it.

Andrea Most

Making Americans: Jews and the Broadway Musical AndreaMostMA

Harvard University Press, 2004

From 1925 to 1951--three chaotic decades of depression, war, and social upheaval--Jewish writers brought to the musical stage a powerfully appealing vision of America fashioned through song and dance. It was an optimistic, meritocratic, selectively inclusive America in which Jews could at once lose and find themselves--assimilation enacted onstage and off, as Andrea Most shows. This book examines two interwoven narratives crucial to an understanding of twentieth-century American culture: the stories of Jewish acculturation and of the development of the American musical.

Here we delve into the work of the most influential artists of the genre during the years surrounding World War II--Irving Berlin, Eddie Cantor, Dorothy and Herbert Fields, George and Ira Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein, Lorenz Hart, and Richard Rodgers--and encounter new interpretations of classics such as The Jazz Singer, Whoopee, Girl Crazy, Babes in Arms, Oklahoma!, Annie Get Your Gun, South Pacific, and The King and I. Most's analysis reveals how these brilliant composers, librettists, and performers transformed the experience of New York Jews into the grand, even sacred acts of being American. Read in the context of memoirs, correspondence, production designs, photographs, and newspaper clippings, the Broadway musical clearly emerges as a form by which Jewish artists negotiated their entrance into secular American society. In this book we see how the communities these musicals invented and the anthems they popularized constructed a vision of America that fostered self-understanding as the nation became a global power.


       Anansi, 2017

In the mid-twentieth century, Canadian literature transformed from a largely ignored trickle of books into an enormous cultural phenomenon that produced Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro, Michael Ondaatje, Mordecai Richler, and so many others. In Arrival, acclaimed writer and critic Nick Mount answers the question: What caused the CanLit Boom?

Written with wit and panache, Arrival tells the story of Canada’s literary awakening. Interwoven with Mount’s vivid tale are enlightening mini-biographies of the people who made it happen, from superstars Leonard Cohen and Marie-Claire Blais to lesser-known lights like the troubled and impassioned Harold Sonny Ladoo. The full range of Canada’s literary boom is here: the underground exploits of the blew ointment and Tish gangs; revolutionary critical forays by highbrow academics; the blunt-force trauma of our plain-spoken backwoods poetry; and the urgent political writing that erupted from the turmoil in Quebec.

Published to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation, Arrival is a dazzling, variegated, and inspired piece of writing that helps explain how we got from there to here.

When Canadian Literature Moved to New YorkNick Mount

When Canadian Literature Moved to New York

University of Toronto Press, 2005

In the last decades of the nineteenth century, an extraordinary literary exodus drained English Canada of over half its writers and all but a few of its present and future literary celebrities. When Canadian Literature Moved to New York is the story of these expatriate writers: of who they were, why they left, what they achieved, and how they changed Canadian literary history. By the 1890s New York City was the undisputed leader of publishing in North America and the centre of an emerging continental literary market. Here, especially, expatriate Canadian writers found for the first time not only a large and receptive literary market, but models of Canadian literary success, from Bliss Carman's Vagabond poems to Ernest Thompson Seton's wildly popular animal stories and Palmer Cox's legion of Brownies. More important for Canadian literature, the recognition the expatriates received from non-Canadian publishers, reviewers, and readers helped legitimize the writing, publishing, and reading of imaginative literature in Canada. In their own time, Canada's expatriates were recognized and thanked for their achievements, but the arrival of the domestic literature they themselves had made possible rekindled nationalist imperatives to distinguish Canadian writing from other literatures, especially American, a project that slowly eliminated most of the expatriates and their work from the emerging Canadian canon. In the end, the expatriates gave Canada more than a literature: they gave it a past in which critics could find both the Canada they wanted and the Canada they did not.
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D. Newman BookDaniel Newman

Modernist Life Histories

Edinburgh University Press, 2019

Provides a unique perspective on the Bildungsroman (novel of formation), one of the most discussed genres in recent scholarly work on modernism. Approaches the study of science and literature with exceptionally close attention to the details of scientific models, their cultural appropriations, and their political implications.

Mary Nyquist

Arbitrary Rule: Slavery, Tyranny, and the Power of Life and Death Mary Nyquist's book cover smaller

The University of Chicago Press, 2013

Slavery appears as a figurative construct during the English revolution of the mid-seventeenth century, and again in the American and French revolutions, when radicals represent their treatment as a form of political slavery. What, if anything, does figurative, political slavery have to do with transatlantic slavery? In Arbitrary Rule, Mary Nyquist explores connections between political and chattel slavery by excavating the tradition of Western political thought that justifies actively opposing tyranny. She argues that as powerful rhetorical and conceptual constructs, Greco-Roman political liberty and slavery reemerge at the time of early modern Eurocolonial expansion; they help to create racialized “free” national identities and their “unfree” counterparts in non-European nations represented as inhabiting an earlier, privative age.

Arbitrary Rule is the first book to tackle political slavery’s discursive complexity, engaging Eurocolonialism, political philosophy, and literary studies, areas of study too often kept apart. Nyquist proceeds through analyses not only of texts that are canonical in political thought—by Aristotle, Cicero, Hobbes, and Locke—but also of literary works by Euripides, Buchanan, Vondel, Montaigne, and Milton, together with a variety of colonialist and political writings, with special emphasis on tracts written during the English revolution. She illustrates how “antityranny discourse,” which originated in democratic Athens, was adopted by republican Rome, and revived in early modern Western Europe, provided members of a “free” community with a means of protesting a threatened reduction of privileges or of consolidating a collective, political identity. Its semantic complexity, however, also enabled it to legitimize racialized enslavement and imperial expansion.

Throughout, Nyquist demonstrates how principles relating to political slavery and tyranny are bound up with a Roman jurisprudential doctrine that sanctions the power of life and death held by the slaveholder over slaves and, by extension, the state, its representatives, or its laws over its citizenry.


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Prescription and TraditionCarol Percy, Ingrid Tieken-Boon van Ostade

Prescription and Tradition in Language: Establishing Standards across Time and Space

Channel View Publications / Multilingual Matters, 2016

SummaryThis book contextualises case studies across a wide variety of languages and cultures, crystallising key interrelationships between linguistic standardisation and prescriptivism, and between ideas and practices. It focuses on different traditions of standardisation and prescription throughout the world and addresses questions such as how nationalistic idealisations of ‘traditional’ language persist (or shift) amid language change, linguistic variation and multilingualism. The volume explores issues of standardisation and the sociolinguistic phenomenon of prescription as a formative influence on the notional standard language as well as the interconnections between these in a wide range of geographical contexts. It balances the otherwise strong emphasis on English in English language publications on prescriptivism and breaks new ground with its multilingual approach across languages and nations. The book will appeal to scholars working within different linguistic traditions interested in questions relating to all aspects of standardisation and prescriptivism.


Long ignored by professional linguists, or dismissed as ‘unnatural’ or ‘artificial’, prescriptivism in language is in this volume the object of serious scientific investigation. This collection explores the vast range of sociolinguistic contexts for prescriptivism, and firmly demonstrates the important place for this research in general linguistics.

- Douglas A. Kibbee, University of Illinois, USA

This volume shows how much we gain in our understanding of standardization and standard languages by looking at a wide range of languages over time, in monolingual and, importantly, multilingual cultures. No matter what language you study, papers here will challenge your thinking about theory and methods and how prescription works in today’s world.

- Anne Curzan, University of Michigan, USA

The Languages of NationsCarol Percy, Mary Catherine Davidson

The Languages of Nation Attitudes and Norms

Channel View Publications / Multilingual Matters, 2012

This collection brings together research on linguistic prescriptivism and social identities, in specific contemporary and historical contexts of cross-cultural contact and awareness. Providing multilingual and multidisciplinary perspectives from language studies, lexicography, literature, and cultural studies, our contributors relate language norms to frameworks of identity beyond monolingual citizenship - nativeness, ethnicity, politics, religion, empire. Some chapters focus on traditional instruments of prescriptivism: language academies in Europe; government language planners in southeast Asia; dictionaries and grammars from Early Modern and imperial Britain, republican America, the postcolonial Caribbean, and modern Germany. Other chapters consider the roles of scholars in prescriptivism, as well as the more informal and populist mechanisms of enforcement expressed in newspapers. With a thematic introduction articulating links between its breadth of perspectives, this accessible book should engage everyone concerned with language norms.


A fascinating and significant collection of essays which offers both historical range and geographic scope. Taken as a whole this is a text which provides the latest thinking in relation to the most important questions related to language and the creation of nationhood. Students and researchers of all levels will find much to discuss and reflect upon in this invaluable collection.

- Tony Crowley, Hartley Burr Alexander Chair in the Humanities, Scripps College, USA

This volume is a timely and fitting contribution to the issue of norms, prescriptivism and language attitudes and the role of language in the formation of nations. It is broad in range, covering all facets of the overall topic. In its organisation it is well structured and is well presented by its editors.

- Raymond Hickey, University of Duisburg and Essen, Germany

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