Alongside my colleague Malcolm McLaughlin, I spoke about our work on the Great Yarmouth Hippodrome at a Seaside Heritage Network event - recording below...
Wednesday, January 10, 2024
I've guest edited a special Christmas-themed double-issue of Comparative American Studies featuring a host of excellent articles which reshape our understanding of the place of the holiday in American life and culture and beyond. Available here (plenty of open access too...). Table of contents below.
Friday, December 01, 2023
Saturday, November 25, 2023
Yesterday was the launch event for the new edition of Black Beauty that I've edited - a collaboration with the wonderful Redwings Horse Sanctuary. It was also the premiere of an another exciting aspect of this project: an animation about the life and legacy of Anna Sewell and her famous book - narrated by Dame Joanna Lumley. Enjoy below!
Thursday, October 26, 2023
"This splendid anthology of Lydia Maria Child’s writings for juveniles is a major publishing event that represents American Studies at its best. The product of an inspiring collaboration between the scholarly editors and their students in the field, the book reprints for the first time a wide range of texts covering all the subjects about which Child sought to educate her youthful readers—relations between indigenous peoples and white settlers; race, enslavement, and abolition; history and revolution; the natural world; and work, wealth, and poverty. The anthology’s superb introduction not only highlights Child‘s role in creating an American children’s literature and influencing later practitioners of the genre but offers insightful interpretations of key texts. Altogether a remarkable achievement."
Carolyn L. Karcher, author The First Woman in the Republic: A Cultural Biography of Lydia Maria Child
"A Juvenile Miscellany, a beautifully edited collection of Lydia Maria Child's children's literature, is a joy to read. The selected stories are lively and evocative; together, they provide irrefutable evidence of Child's genius as a pioneering American children's author. The editors' introduction contextualizes the stories in Child's wider career as a radical abolitionist and reformer, confirming her status as a major nineteenth-century intellectual with much still to teach us today. "
Lydia Moland, author of Lydia Maria Child: A Radical American Life
"A Juvenile Miscellany: An Anthology of Lydia Maria Child’s Writing for Children is a milestone in the author’s recovery. Offering an abundant selection of the author’s work on various social justice causes, as well as key texts on the natural world, this generous collection represents Child brilliantly as an activist and a citizen. It is exactly the book I have been wanting."
Karen Kilcup, Elizabeth Rosenthal Excellence Professor at UNC Greensboro and author of Stronger, Truer, Bolder: American Children's Writing, Nature, and the Environment
Over the last few months, with my colleague Malcolm McLaughlin, I've started a new research project on the history of the Great Yarmouth Hippodrome and circus at the seaside. Our first article, "Circus at the Seaside: Building the Great Yarmouth Hippodrome, 1903", has just been published open access in Coastal Studies & Society. Available here. Abstract below...
Thursday, July 27, 2023
|Sol Eytinge's illustration of the three spirits visiting Scrooge in Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, taken from the 1868 Ticknor and Fields American edition.
Excited to say that my article on the tumultuous Transatlantic reception of Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, 1844-1870, has just been published open access in Comparative American Studies. You can read it for free here. Abstract below...
Thursday, April 27, 2023
Mary E. Wilkins Freeman (1852–1930) was one of the most popular American writers at the turn of the twentieth century, and her annual Christmas stories appeared in magazines and periodicals across the globe. Since then, the extraordinary stories that once delighted her legions of fans every festive season have gone largely out of print and unread. Now, for the first time, The Last Gift presents a collection of Freeman’s best Christmas writing, introducing these funny, poignant, provocative, and surprisingly timely holiday tales to a new generation of readers.
And here's some advance praise from some wonderful Freeman experts!
“Celebrated in her own time not only as a New England regionalist but also as writer of popular Christmas stories, Mary E. Wilkins Freeman challenged the genre's sentimental limits by questioning the relationships between charity and obligation, theft and gift, and transgression and redemption which her characters experience at Christmas. As Thomas Ruys Smith argues in his excellent, lively, and comprehensive introduction to these twenty-five stories, some published for the first time since their original appearance, Freeman's unjustly neglected Christmas stories reveal a new understanding both of the genre's significance and of Freeman's career as a professional writer.”—Donna Campbell, author of Bitter Tastes: Literary Naturalism and Early Cinema in American Women’s Writing.
“Finally, a volume that reprints Freeman’s Christmas fare. Freeman’s Christmas stories are inventive and experimental, emphasizing the emotional and practical complexities of the holiday, with profound implications for gendered labour, class inequality, the building of community, and the pleasures and perils of consumption. The impressive introduction frames the stories within the history of the holiday and Freeman’s delight in its intrigue.”—Stephanie Palmer, co-editor of New Perspectives on Mary E. Wilkins Freeman: Reading with and against the Grain
Sixteen years later, River of Dreams is now available in paperback! Grab your copy here and see if it still holds up...