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The collection Imperial Middlebrow, edited by Christoph Ehland and Jana Gohrisch, takes middlebrow studies further in two ways. First, it focuses on the role middlebrow writing played in the popularisation and dissemination of imperial ideology. It combines the interest in the wider function of literature for a colonial society with close scrutiny of the ideological and socio-economic contexts of writers and readers. The essays cover the Girl’s Own Paper, fiction about colonial India including its appearance in Scottish writing, the West Indies, the South Pacific, as well as illustrations of Haggard’s South African imperial romances. Second, the volume proposes using the concept of the middlebrow as an analytical tool to read recent black and Asian British as well as Nigerian fiction.
Light from the East
The Neo-Buddhist Writings of Lafcadio Hearn: Light from the East by Antony Goedhals offers radical rereadings of a misunderstood and undervalued Victorian writer. It reveals that at the metaphysical core of Lafcadio Hearn’s writings is a Buddhist vision as yet unappreciated by his critics and biographers. Beginning with the American writings and ending with the essay- and story-meditations of the Japanese period, the book demonstrates Hearn’s deeply personal and transcendently beautiful evocations of a Buddhist universe, and shows how these deconstruct and dissolve the categories of Western discourse and thinking about reality – to create a new language, a poetry of vastness, emptiness, and oneness that had not been heard before in English, or, indeed, in the West.
The Poetics and Politics of Hospitality in U.S. Literature and Culture explores hospitality in a range of cultural expressions from a variety of approaches. The authors analyze and discuss forms of hospitality in canonical literature, ethnic literatures, language or movies. These span from the classical to the contemporary and include a focus on language, power, hybridism, and sociology. The common theme in these contributions is that of American identity. By looking at a diversity of representations of American culture, using a multiplicity of approaches, the authors convey the richness of American hospitality as a vital aspect of its culture.
Faith, Politics, and Resistance in Post-Reformation England, 1570-1603
In The Excommunication of Elizabeth I, Aislinn Muller examines the excommunication and deposition of Queen Elizabeth I of England by the Roman Catholic Church, and its political afterlife during her reign. Muller shows that Elizabeth’s excommunication was a crucial turning point for both Catholics and Protestants, one that irrevocably changed attitudes towards the queen, widened political participation and resistance, and posed a destabilising threat to her regime. The Excommunication of Elizabeth I demonstrates how this event exacerbated religious tensions in England’s foreign and domestic politics, and how Elizabeth’s conflict with the papacy shaped the development of anti-Catholicism in post-Reformation England.
Studies in Anglophone Borders Criticism
Editor: Ciaran Ross
This collection emphasizes a cross-disciplinary approach to the relevance of borders and bordering as a spatial paradigm in Anglophone studies. It sets out to provide a critical counter-narrative to the 1990s globalization argument of a “borderless” world by insisting on the significant roles borders play. The essays range in subject matter from geography, history, British and American literature to painting and Reggae music and map out different conceptualisations of the border: place, line, process, contact zones, etc. The volume’s cross-border “narrative” serves as a point of communication between the local and the global, between Europe and America, between different literary and artistic genres, thus challenging the divides of geography and literature, between “real” territorial borders and their “fictional” counterparts.
Sydney Goodsir Smith, Poet: Essays on His Life and Work offers the first substantial work to assess his life and writings since his premature death in 1975. Considered a major figure in the second wave of Hugh MacDiarmid’s ‘Scottish Literary Renaissance’, Smith’s unique body of work has largely fallen from critical discussion of post-war Scottish literature.

This book remedies this by showing how his work may have fallen out of favour, and then by reappraising his distinctive and varied achievements in poetry, drama, art and art criticism, the novel and translations. Early career and established academics explore the many strands of his work as the best way of giving this multifaceted literary figure renewed attention.
In American History in Transition, Yoshinari Yamaguchi provides fresh insights into early efforts in American history writing, ranging from Jeremy Belknap’s Massachusetts Historical Society to Emma Willard’s geographic history and Francis Parkman’s history of deep time to Henry Adams’s thermodynamic history. Although not a well-organized set of professional researchers, these historians shared the same concern: the problems of temporalization and secularization in history writing.
As the time-honored framework of sacred history was gradually outdated, American historians at that time turned to individual facts as possible evidence for a new generalization, and tried different “scientific” theories to give coherency to their writings. History writing was in its transitional phase, shifting from religion to science, deduction to induction, and static to dynamic worldview.
From Margaret Atwood to Jenny Diski
How are well-known female characters from the Bible represented in late 20th-century novels? In Biblical Women in Contemporary Novels in English, Ingrid Bertrand presents a detailed analysis of biblical rewritings by Roberts, Atwood, Tennant, Diamant and Diski focusing on six different women (Eve, Noah’s wife, Sarah, Bilhah, Dinah and Mary Magdalene). She shows how these heroines give themselves a voice that rests not only on words but also on silences. Exploring the many forms that silence can take, she presents an innovative typology that sheds new light on this profoundly meaningful phenomenon.
Paul Muldoon and the Language of Poetry is the first book in years that attends to the entire oeuvre of the Irish-American poet, critic, lyricist, dramatist and Princeton professor from his debut with New Weather in 1973 up to his very recent publications. Ruben Moi’s book explores, in correspondence with language philosophy and critical debate, how Muldoon’s ingenious language and inventive form give shape and significance to his poetry, and how his linguistic panache and technical verve keep language forever surprising, new and alive.
The Brand of Print offers a comprehensive analysis of the ways printers, publishers, stationers, and booksellers designed paratexts to market printed books as cultural commodities. This study traces envoys to the reader, visual design in title pages and tables of contents, and patron dedications, illustrating how the agents of print branded their markets by crafting relationships with readers and articulating the value of their labor in an increasingly competitive trade. Applying terms from contemporary marketing theory to the study of early modern paratexts, Andie Silva encourages a consideration of how print agents' labor and agency, made visible through paratextual design, continues to influence how we read, study, and digitize early modern texts.