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The Aesthetics of Kinship
Form and Family in the Long Eighteenth Century
Heidi Schlipphacke
Bucknell University Press, 2023
The Aesthetics of Kinship intervenes critically into rigidified discourses about the emergence of the nuclear family and the corresponding interior subject in the eighteenth century. By focusing on kinship constellations instead of “family plots” in seminal literary works of the period, this book presents an alternative view of the eighteenth-century literary social world and its concomitant ideologies. Whereas Enlightenment and post-Enlightenment philosophy and political theory posit the nuclear family as a microcosm for the ideal modern nation-state, literature of the period offers a far more heterogeneous image of kinship structures, one that includes members of various classes and is not defined by blood. Through a radical re-reading of the multifarious kinship structures represented in literature of the long eighteenth century, The Aesthetics of Kinship questions the inevitability of the dialectic of the Enlightenment and invokes alternative futures for conceptions of social and political life.

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Authorship in the Long Eighteenth Century
Dustin Griffin
University of Delaware Press, 2014
This book deals with changing conditions and conceptions of authorship in the long eighteenth century, a period often said to have witnessed the birth of the modern author. It focuses not on authorial self-presentation or self-revelation but on an author’s interactions with booksellers, collaborators, rivals, correspondents, patrons, and audiences. Challenging older accounts of the development of authorship in the period as well as newer claims about the “public sphere” and the “professional writer,” it engages with recent work on print culture and the history of the book. Methodologically eclectic, it moves from close readings to strategic contextualization. The book is organized both chronologically and topically. Early chapters deal with writers – notably Milton and Dryden – at the beginning of the long eighteenth century, and later chapters focus more on writers — among them Johnson, Gray, and Gibbon — toward its end. Looking beyond the traditional canon, it considers a number of little-known or little-studied writers, including Richard Bentley, Thomas Birch, William Oldys, James Ralph, and Thomas Ruddiman. Some of the essays are organized around a single writer, but most deal with a broad topic – literary collaboration, literary careers, the republic of letters, the alleged rise of the “professional writer,” and the rather different figure of the “author by profession.”

Published by University of Delaware Press. Distributed worldwide by Rutgers University Press.

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The Botany of Empire in the Long Eighteenth Century
Yota Batsaki
Harvard University Press

This book brings together an international body of scholars working on eighteenth-century botany within the context of imperial expansion. The eighteenth century saw widespread exploration, a tremendous increase in the traffic in botanical specimens, taxonomic breakthroughs, and horticultural experimentation. The contributors to this volume compare the impact of new developments and discoveries across several regions, broadening the geographical scope of their inquiries to encompass imperial powers that did not have overseas colonial possessions—such as the Russian, Ottoman, and Qing empires and the Tokugawa shogunate—as well as politically borderline regions such as South Africa, Yemen, and New Zealand.

The essays in this volume examine the botanical ambitions of eighteenth-century empires; the figure of the botanical explorer; the links between imperial ambition and the impulse to survey, map, and collect botanical specimens in “new” territories; and the relationships among botanical knowledge, self-representation, and material culture.


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The Enlightenment's Animals
Changing Conceptions of Animals in the Long Eighteenth Century
Nathaniel Wolloch
Amsterdam University Press, 2019
In The Enlightenment’s Animals Nathaniel Wolloch takes a broad view of changing conceptions of animals in European culture during the long eighteenth century. Combining discussions of intellectual history, the history of science, the history of historiography, the history of economic thought, and, not least, art history, this book describes how animals were discussed and conceived in different intellectual and artistic contexts underwent a dramatic shift during this period. While in the seventeenth century and the first half of the eighteenth century the main focus was on the sensory and cognitive characteristics of animals, during the late Enlightenment a new outlook emerged, emphasizing their conception as economic resources. Focusing particularly on seventeenth-century Dutch culture, and on the Scottish Enlightenment, Wolloch discusses developments in other countries as well, presenting a new look at a topic of increasing importance in modern scholarship.

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Oriental Networks
Culture, Commerce, and Communication in the Long Eighteenth Century
Bärbel Czennia
Bucknell University Press, 2021
Oriental Networks explores forms of interconnectedness between Western and Eastern hemispheres during the long eighteenth century, a period of improving transportation technology, expansion of intercultural contacts, and the emergence of a global economy. In eight case studies and a substantial introduction, the volume examines relationships between individuals and institutions, precursors to modern networks that engaged in forms of intercultural exchange. Addressing the exchange of cultural commodities (plants, animals, and artifacts), cultural practices and ideas, the roles of ambassadors and interlopers, and the literary and artistic representation of networks, networkers, and networking, contributors discuss the effects on people previously separated by vast geographical and cultural distance. Rather than idealizing networks as inherently superior to other forms of organization, Oriental Networks also considers Enlightenment expressions of resistance to networking that inform modern skepticism toward the concept of the global network and its politics. In doing so the volume contributes to the increasingly global understanding of culture and communication.

Published by Bucknell University Press. Distributed worldwide by Rutgers University Press.

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Poets Laureate in the Long Eighteenth Century, 1668-1813
Leo Shipp
University of London Press, 2022
A history of the development and importance of the office of poet laureate of Britain.

The office of the poet laureate of Britain was a highly prominent, relevant, and respectable institution throughout the long eighteenth century. First instituted for John Dryden in 1668, the laureateship developed from an honorific into a functionary office with a settled position in court, and in 1813 was bestowed upon Robert Southey, whose tenure transformed the office. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, this book examines the office’s institutional changes and public reception, the mechanics of each laureate’s appointment, and the works produced by the laureates before and after their appointments. It argues that the laureateship played a key part in some of the most vital trends in eighteenth-century culture.
At the core of the book is a new research paradigm that Leo Shipp calls the conceptual geography of culture. It shows that Britons routinely used spatial concepts to understand culture throughout the period, which became increasingly abstract over time. As part of this, Shipp shows, the court evolved from a concrete space in London to an abstract space capable of hosting the entire British public. The laureateship was a dynamic office positioned at the interface of court and public, evolving in line with its audiences. An important intervention in eighteenth-century historiography, this book presents a nuanced understanding of eighteenth-century culture and society, in which the laureateship exemplified the enduring centrality of the court to the British conceptual geography of culture.

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Unsettling Sexuality
Queer Horizons in the Long Eighteenth Century
Jeremy Chow
University of Delaware Press, 2025
Unsettling Sexuality: Queer Horizons in the Long Eighteenth Century challenges the traditional ways that scholarship has approached sexuality, gender nonconformity, and sex (as well as its absence) in the long eighteenth century. Drawing from recent and emerging criticisms in Middle-Eastern and Asian studies, Black studies, and Native American and Indigenous studies, the collected authors perform intersectional queer readings, reimagine queer historiographic methods, and spearhead new citational models that can invigorate the field. Contributors read with and against diverse European, transatlantic, and global archives to explore mutually informative frameworks of gender, sexuality, race, indigeneity, ability, and class. In charting multidirectional queer horizons, this collection locates new prospective desires and intimacies in the literature, culture, and media of the period to imagine new directions and simultaneously unsettle eighteenth-century studies.

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The World of Elizabeth Inchbald
Essays on Literature, Culture, and Theatre in the Long Eighteenth Century
Daniel J. Ennis
University of Delaware Press, 2022
This collection centers on the remarkable life and career of the writer and actor Elizabeth Inchbald (1753–1821), active in Great Britain in the late eighteenth century. Inspired by the example of Inchbald’s biographer, Annibel Jenkins (1918–2013), the contributors explore the broad historical and cultural context around Inchbald’s life and work, with essays ranging from the Restoration to the nineteenth century. Ranging from visual culture, theater history, literary analyses and to historical investigations, the essays not only present a fuller picture of cultural life in Great Britain in the long eighteenth century, but also reflect a range of disciplinary perspectives. The collection concludes with the final scholarly presentation of the late Professor Jenkins, a study of the eighteenth-century English newspaper The World (1753-1756). 

front cover of Writing through Boyhood in the Long Eighteenth Century
Writing through Boyhood in the Long Eighteenth Century
Age, Gender, and Work
Chantel Lavoie
University of Delaware Press, 2024
Writing through Boyhood in the Long Eighteenth Century explores how boyhood was constructed in different creative spaces that reflected the lived experience of young boys through the long eighteenth century—not simply in children’s literature but in novels, poetry, medical advice, criminal broadsides, and automaton exhibitions. The chapters encompass such rituals as breeching, learning to read and write, and going to school. They also consider the lives of boys such as chimney sweeps and convicted criminals, whose bodily labor was considered their only value and who often did not live beyond boyhood. Defined by a variety of tasks, expectations, and objectifications, boys—real, imagined, and sometimes both—were subject to the control of their elders and were used as tools in the cause of civil society, commerce, and empire. This book argues that boys in the long eighteenth century constituted a particular kind of currency, both valuable and expendable—valuable because of gender, expendable because of youth. 

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