Review 19: An Online Review of New Books on English and American Literature of the 19th Century
 

New Reviews
 
Jerome McGann, ed.
Martin Delany's BLAKE; OR THE HUTS OF AMERICA. A CORRECTED EDITION
(Harvard, 2017) xxxviii + 344 pp.
Reviewed by Evan Loker on 2020-05-20.

Since its recovery by Floyd Miller in 1970, Martin Delany's serialized novel Blake; or the Huts of America has been at the forefront of successive trends in politically-minded Americanist Studies. The peculiar vicissitudes of its publication history --serialized in magazines just before the Civil War and reprinted in a single volume only in the Beacon Press edition of 1970-- have made this...
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Elizabeth Freeman
BESIDE YOU IN TIME: SENSE METHODS AND QUEER SOCIABILITIES IN THE AMERICAN 19TH CENTURY
(Duke, 2019), xii + 228 pp.
Reviewed by Daniel T. O'Hara on 2020-04-08.

The jacket copy for Beside You in Time explains that its author

expands biopolitical and queer theory by outlining a temporal view of the long nineteenth century. Drawing on Foucauldian notions of discipline as a regime that yoked the human body to time, Freeman shows how time became a social and sensory means by which people assembled into groups in ways...
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Jane Porter
THADDEUS OF WARSAW. A NOVEL, Ed. Thomas McLean and Ruth Knezevich
(Edinburgh, 2019) xxv + 414 pp.
Reviewed by Joanna Rostek on 2020-04-02.

A modern scholarly edition of an historical literary text can be appraised by means of two criteria: the quality of the editorial work and the text's relevance for contemporary readers and academic enquiry. This edition of a novel first published in 1803 succeeds on both counts. As part of a series, Edinburgh Critical Editions of Nineteenth-Century Texts, it skillfully revives a narrative that...
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Ian Duncan
HUMAN FORMS: THE NOVEL IN THE AGE OF EVOLUTION
(Princeton, 2019) xiii 290 pp.
Reviewed by Lauren Cameron on 2020-03-25.

This book begins by intriguingly promising to explore "a commonplace that has largely escaped critical attention." While novels are grounded in "human nature" during the age of European realism (circa 1750-1880), the human species itself is redefined by a "natural history of man" that is "[d]ensely entangled with the rise of evolutionary science," so the supposed formlessness of the novel "now marked...
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Anne C. McCarthy
AWFUL PARENTHESIS: SUSPENSION AND THE SUBLIME IN ROMANTIC AND VICTORIAN POETRY
(Toronto UP, 2018) x + 218 pp.
Reviewed by Sasha Tamar Strelitz on 2020-02-10.

Throughout its intellectual history extending as far back as Longinus, a central characteristic of the sublime is reflection, mostly in the emotional realm as opposed to the rational. Regardless of where it lies on the spectrum between grand and grotesque, what makes an object sublime is the observer's affective reflection on it. For example, the ocean itself is not sublime (as I understand the...
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