Our M.O.

The Nineteenth-Century Studies Group is an interdisciplinary forum for graduate students at the University of Washington whose work engages the long nineteenth century, broadly defined, from a variety of different methodological perspectives. Our focus is British, but our historical framework encompasses both ends of the nineteenth century, and we welcome and encourage the participation of members who work both in the eighteenth century as well as the turn of the twentieth. Our goal is to facilitate collegial dialogue about the literature, criticism, history, aesthetics, and social and political culture of the British nineteenth century, as well as to advance our own interactions with the conversations of contemporary literary and cultural critics. Towards this end, the group also brings leading scholars to campus for lectures, discussions, and workshops.

Meetings will take place once a quarter, and will be led by a volunteer discussion leader for that session. Each meeting will generally offer one literary work paired with one critical work. Primary texts will be chosen from a list of solicited requests, and the discussion leader will be able to select a critical work that they feel will be a suitable match for the literature. All reading selections will be posted on the website prior to discussion. To further encourage professionalization, the group will also engage with writing workshops, whose aim will be to generate material for publication through workshops with faculty and peer reviewers.

Though intellectual in scope, a primary mission of this group is to solidify a community of scholars. We seek to cultivate an environment where critical discussion can take place, but also want to mobilize that discussion through collegiality and support. By engaging with this group we hope to provide a supportive environment to foster the development of professional activities, and scholarly writing and research.

Latest News and Announcements

Poetry for Play Hours: Victorian Poets and the Culture of Children's Verse
October 12, 2012
Communications 226

Please join us for a talk by Kirstie Blair, Senior Lecturer in the English department at the University of Glasgow.  This event is co-sponsored by the UW English and Comparative Literature departments and the Simpson Center.

Fall Meeting: The Notting Hill Mystery
November 8, 2012
The Burke Museum Cafe

This quarter we'll be reading The Notting Hill Mystery, by an anonymous author who used the pseudonym "Charles Felix" and may have been known in real life as "Charles Adams."  Regardless, its serial publication over 1862 and 1863 makes it a candidate for the title of "first English detective novel," and it's a fun and quick read.


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                                     Graphics: "An Arab Interior." Arthur Melville. 1881. National Gallery of Scotland; Edinburgh.        British Map of India. 1895. Century Atlas; Rawl McNally.
 "Ophelia." Sir John Everett Millais. 1851-52. Tate Britain; London.
Plan of the Panopticon. Jeremy Bentham. 1843 (orig. 1791). Public Domain.