There have been many brief and detached accounts of the Bastille current in the English sphere of literature; but this is the first connected and important history that has hitherto satisfied the curiosity of the public regarding an event that must be considered with no ordinary degree of attention. The throne of him whom the French deemed a despot was only to be essentially shaken by the destruction of the worst engine of its tyranny; and when the adamantine bars of the gates of that terrible castle were destroyed—when the secrets of the prison-house were displayed—when the dark dungeon of slavery was illuminated by the torch of popular vengeance—then emanated from that dismal abode young Liberty.
[REVIEW] “Robin Hood in Outlaw/ed Spaces” (2015)
Robin Hood scholars consistently publish excellent new peer-reviewed research in edited volumes, and the latest offering from editors Valerie Johnson and Lesley Coote is no exception to this. This new book entitled Robin Hood in Outlaw/ed Spaces: Media, Performance, and Other New Directions contains essays written by a number of different scholars on varying topics. There truly is something for Robin Hood scholars and medievalists of any calling, whether they work in the field of medieval studies, nineteenth-century literature, or twentieth-century culture, and this review only picks up on a couple of the highlights from the collection.
Stephen Carver’s “Author Who Outsold Dickens” (2020): Biography of a Crime Novelist
This book, highly recommended, is an excellent buy for any general reader who wishes to find out about the life of a famous forgotten Victorian crime novelist.
Review: “The 19th-Century Underworld: Crime, Controversy & Corruption” by Stephen Carver
In The 19th-Century Underworld: Crime, Controversy & Corruption, historian and novelist Stephen Carver, drawing upon a wide range of archival and literary sources, takes us on a journey through the seedy courts and sinister alleyways of the criminal underworld which existed during the nineteenth century.
No Longer a “Dark Age”: Susan Oosthuizen’s “The Emergence of the English” (2019)
When the Roman legions withdrew from Britain, the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes arrived and, so history tells us, violently displaced the existing Romano-British. But that’s not true, according to Susan Oosthuizen’s new book.
Mike Leigh’s “Peterloo” (2018)
Mike Leigh has produced a visually impressive movie, but the characters are a bit flat.
“Lenin Lives!” (2017) by Philip Cunliffe
Philip Cunliffe has written a fascinating book which gives an account of how history might have turned out had the goals of early twentieth-century socialists been realised.
Hang’d, Drawn, and Quartered! “Spectacular Justice” during the Medieval and Early Modern Period
Katherine Royer’s new book, “The English Execution Narrative, 1200-1700” (2015) analyses the meanings behind the often gruesome executions carried out in the medieval and early modern period.
Book Review: “The Art of Law: Three Centuries of Justice Depicted” (2017)
Throughout history, art depicting the law and justice helped to legitimise the power of the courts
Review: Paul Kingsnorth’s “The Wake” (2014)
I am participating on a round table discussion on this novel at a forthcoming conference, and have used my notes to write a review.
Review: Stephen Knight’s “Reading Robin Hood” (2015)
Knight is the man who back in 1994 essentially rescued Robin Hood Studies from the seemingly never-ending quest to find a ‘real’ Robin Hood by shifting the discipline’s emphasis towards literary research.
The Worst Novel I’ve Ever Read: Samuel Richardson’s “Pamela” (1740)
I feel bad writing about something like this, like I’m betraying my eighteenth-century roots.