New Books Network

John West, “Dryden and Enthusiasm: Literature, Religion and Politics in Restoration England” (Oxford UP, 2018)
John Dryden is often regarded as one of the most conservative writers in later seventeenth-century England, a time-serving “trimmer” who abandoned his early commitments to the English Republic to become the poet laureate and historiographer royal of Charles II’s new regime. But, as this important new book demonstrates, Dryden never... Read More
Robbie Richardson, “The Savage and Modern Self: North American Indians in Eighteenth-Century British Literature and Culture” (U Toronto Press, 2018)
As they explored and struggled to establish settlements in what they called ‘new found lands’, the encounter with the peoples of those lands deeply affected how the British saw themselves. From the onset of colonisation, exotic visitors appeared in London. We recognise their names: Pocahontas, Manteo, Squanto. If you look... Read More
Demetra Kasimis, “The Perpetual Immigrant and the Limits of Athenian Democracy” (Cambridge UP, 2018)
Demetra Kasimis’s new book, The Perpetual Immigrant and the Limits of Athenian Democracy (Cambridge University Press, 2018) interrogates the role and unstable place of the metics (metoikoi) in Athenian society.  The book focuses on three different presentations and discussions of the metics, in Euripides’ Ion, in Plato’s Republic, and in Demosthenes’... Read More
Mimi Hanaoka, “Authority and Identity in Medieval Islamic Historiography: Persian Histories from the Periphery” (Cambridge UP, 2017)
How do peripheral places assert the centrality of their identity? Why are fanciful events, like dreams and myths, useful narrative elements for identity construction and arguments about authority, legitimacy, and rhetoric? In Authority and Identity in Medieval Islamic Historiography: Persian Histories from the Periphery (Cambridge University Press, 2017), Mimi Hanaoka,... Read More
Christopher Childers, “The Webster-Hayne Debate: Defining Nationhood in the Early American Republic” (Johns Hopkins UP, 2018)
No, not the Lincoln-Douglas debates. Perhaps even more important than that Illinois contest of 1858 was the Webster-Hayne debate of 1830. Confused? Drawing a blank? Not really your fault. Would you be even more surprised to hear that these were debates held not out in front of voters, but in... Read More
Niall Geraghty, “The Polyphonic Machine: Capitalism, Political Violence, and Resistance in Contemporary Argentine Literature” (U Pittsburgh Press, 2019)
What options for resistance are left to the author of fiction in a nation structured by totalizing political and economic violence? This is the question at the heart of Niall Geraghty’s eloquent and engaging book, The Polyphonic Machine: Capitalism, Political Violence, and Resistance in Contemporary Argentine Literature (University of Pittsburgh... Read More
Ryan Hanley, “Beyond Slavery and Abolition: Black British Writing, c. 1770 -1830” (Cambridge UP, 2019)
To our eyes, eighteenth-century Britain can look like a world of opposites. On one hand everything was new: political parties and a ‘prime’ minister emerged in parliament; their sometime unruly debates were recorded by an expanding political press, whose products were read and debated in London’s many coffee houses. The... Read More