America

LeFavour, "Acting 'Natural': Vanity Fair and the Unmasking of Anglo-American Sentiment"

Taking Vanity Fair's popular success in the United States as one of many signals that an enclosed body of American 'domestic fiction' is untenable, LeFavour takes Thackeray's mockery of the genre as a signal to reconsider the naivite of American readers and the American fiction they read. This essay appears in _Sullen Fires Across the Atlantic: Essays in Transatlantic Romanticism_, a volume of _Romantic Circles Praxis Series_, prepared exclusively for Romantic Circles (http://www.rc.umd.edu/), University of Maryland.

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Hale, "'[S]hak[ing] the dwellings of the great': Liberation in Joanna Baillie's Poems (1790)"

Hale examines Baillie's anonymously published collection Poems (1790) in the context of the British reaction to the French Revolution, Baillie's political ideology as expressed in her letters, and the poetic climate of the second half of the eighteenth century. Through a close reading of the poems he argues that even though some of the poems depict some ambivalence about the eighteenth-century class system, the early Baillie ultimately critiques that system and subtly encourages rural workers to resist its stifling roles. Hale recovers Baillie as a valuable romantic poet and invites scholars to consider her poetry as they flesh out her status as an important dramatist and literary theorist.

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Underwood, "Culture and Discontinuity (in the 1840s and in Foucault)"

For a little over a century and a half, professors of literature have been celebrating historical specificity, while chafing against the constraints of continuous narrative. Literary historians' enthusiasm for Michel Foucault's critique of historical continuity is only the latest instance of this long-standing disciplinary preference. Underwood traces the social and institutional authority of discontinuity in literary study back to the first 'period surveys,' and in particular to the pedagogy of F. D. Maurice.

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O'Quinn, "Projection, Patriotism, Surrogation: Handel in Calcutta"

This paper examines the celebrations following the defeat of Tipu Sultan in the Third Mysore War. By attending to both the visual projections and to the performance of Handel's Judas Maccabaeus in Calcutta, it argues that much of entertainment was involved in a complex allegorical struggle with France. This essay appears in _Romanticism and Patriotism: Nation, Empire, Bodies, Rhetoric_, a volume of _Romantic Circles Praxis Series_, prepared exclusively for Romantic Circles (http://www.rc.umd.edu/), University of Maryland.

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Heringman, "'Manlius to Peter Pindar': Satire, Patriotism, and Masculinity in the 1790s"

This essay examines the political satires of John Wolcot (alias Peter Pindar) in the context of the numerous patriotic attacks on their author between 1787 and 1801. Wolcot's satires on George III met with ferocious, politically motivated attacks on the poet's masculinity. These can be explained only in part with reference to the French Revolution: Wolcot's literary combats, and his influence on younger satirists such as James Gillray, also testify to the longer-term importance of sodomy, scatology, and gendered notions of the king's two bodies in English political debate. This essay appears in _Romanticism and Patriotism: Nation, Empire, Bodies, Rhetoric_, a volume of _Romantic Circles Praxis Series_, prepared exclusively for Romantic Circles (http://www.rc.umd.edu/), University of Maryland.

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Introduction: Obi, Aldridge and Abolition

The pantomime and melodrama versions of Obi, or Three-finger'd Jack played an important role in abolition debates and in the career of Ira Aldridge, the first African-American actor of international stature. This Praxis volume includes essays by preeminent scholars of English Romanticism, theater, and music history on the evolution, performance history, and social and cultural impact of the Obi plays, as well as illustrations and modern video reproductions of scenes from both the pantomime and melodrama versions. This volume also contains the complete text of the melodrama version of Obi.
August 2002

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Obi in New York: Aldridge and the African Grove

Buckley argues that Obi occupied a small and unexceptional part of New York City's theatrical scene until its strange appropriation by the first African-American theatrical troupe. The reworking of the Obi material is not only placed in the context of the city's race relations but also within the increasing transatlantic demand for novelty entertainments.
August 2002

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Wolfson, "The Know of Not to Know It: My Returns to Reading and Teaching Keats's 'Ode on a Grecian Urn'"

Ode on a Grecian Urn repays pleasurable labors of careful reading, not as a search for information or an occasion for exposures of ideology, but as a tracking and tracing of language as event, as field of play, as a discovery of indeterminacy in the desire for determinations. This essay appears in _Ode on a Grecian Urn: Hypercanonicity & Pedagogy_, a volume of _Romantic Circles Praxis Series_, prepared exclusively for Romantic Circles (http://www.rc.umd.edu/), University of Maryland.

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