Book: Gerard Cohen-Vrignaud

This August Cambridge University Press will publish Radical Orientalism: Rights, Reform, and Romanticism by Gerard Cohen-Vrignaud.

rad orientThis fascinating study reveals the extent to which the Orientalism of Byron and the Shelleys resonated with the reformist movement of the Romantic era. It documents how and why radicals like Bentham, Cobbett, Carlile, Hone and Wooler, among others in post-Revolutionary Britain, invoked Turkey, North Africa and Mughal India when attacking and seeking to change their government’s domestic policies. Examining a broad archive ranging from satires, journalism, tracts, political and economic treatises, and public speeches, to the exotic poetry and fictions of canonical Romanticism, Gerard Cohen-Vrignaud shows that promoting colonization was not Orientalism’s sole ideological function. Equally vital was its aesthetic and rhetorical capacity to alienate the people’s affection from their rulers and fuel popular opposition to regressive taxation, penal cruelty, police repression, and sexual regulation.

Order it from Cambridge University Press for your library now. You can also order Kindle as well as hardcover versions of Radical Orientalism through Amazon for your personal collection.


UT English Dept co-sponsors 2016 INCS conference in Asheville, NC

INCS2016CFP_curtainINCS 2016, “Natural and Unnatural Histories” will be hosted at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC on 10-13 March 2016. The University of Tennessee English Department is one of the sponsors of the event along with main sponsor Appalachia State, and Professors Nancy Henry and Amy Billone  of UT are members of the organizing committee.

The Keynote speakers are Kate Flint (University of Southern California) and Elaine Freedgood (NYU). See the cfp here: INCS2016CFP

Deadline: November 2, 2015. Upload proposals and a one-page CV via  For individual papers, send 250-word proposals; for panels, send individual proposals plus a 250-word panel description. Proposals that are interdisciplinary in method or panels that involve multiple disciplines are especially welcome. Questions? Contact Jill Ehnenn at

Nancy Henry named new associate editor of George Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies.

Recently, Professor Nancy Henry was named the new associate editor of George Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies. Nancy_HenrySince its inception more than thirty years ago, George Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies seeks to provide a forum for those interested and actively engaged in working with either George Eliot, George Henry Lewes, or the relationship between them and their circle. Congratulations, Professor Henry!

Soon, the journal will be publishing a George Henry Lewes Bicentennial Issue

EL_WEBcovGeorge Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies, a peer-reviewed journal, invites submissions for a special issue to commemorate the life and writing of George Henry Lewes (1817-1878) on the bicentennial of his birth.

Submissions of 5,000-6,000 words on any aspect of Lewes’s life and writing are due by July 29, 2016.

To submit a manuscript, visit: and create an author profile.

Address inquiries to William Baker ( and Nancy Henry (

Victorian Modernities Conference, 25-27 June 2015

Recently, graduate student Kat Powell traveled to Canterbury, England to attend the Victorian Modernities conference at the University of Kent. The event was inspired by the 150th anniversary of the famous Staplehurst railway accident in which Charles Dickens, Ellen Ternan and her mother were all surviving victims. vm

The conference featured two stellar Keynote speakers: Professor Jonathan Grossman (UCLA), “Standardisation (standardization)” and Professor Ruth Livesey (Royal Holloway, University of London), “Victorian Modernity & the ‘Just Past’: Travelling the Empty Road with Dickens & Hardy.” Conference attendants were also treated to a spectacular magic lantern show, which traced the development and influence of the railways over the 19th century. At the conference, UT graduate student Kat Powell presented her paper, “Engineering heroes: Railway inventions & literary interventions in Victorian women’s writing.”