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Seminar: the Anglo-German Reading Nation, 1750–1850

Date: Friday 28 October 2022, 9am
Location: Richard Eden Suite, Clare Hall, Herschel Road, Cambridge CB3 9AL
Booking: via Eventbrite

Organised by Clare Hall Life Members Elinor Shaffer and Maximiliaan van Woudenberg, this one-day seminar brings together leading scholars in Anglo-German studies, Romanticism, Library studies, and the History of the Book, for a conversation exploring Anglo-German reading and readers against the backdrop of William St Clair’s seminal The Reading Nation in the Romantic Period (2004).

View the event programme via this PDF.

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About the seminar organisers

Maximiliaan van Woudenberg is a Life Member of Clare Hall and a life-long enthusiast of British and German Romanticism, and all things Anglo-German. As a Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall (2018–2019), he researched the German ghost stories that Mary Shelley read in Fantasmagoriana (1812) before she created Frankenstein (1818), which recently appeared as a chapter in The Cambridge History of the Gothic (2020). Maximiliaan is also the author of Coleridge and Cosmopolitan Intellectualism 1794–1804: The Legacy of Göttingen University (2018), and along with Professor Anthony Mandal co-edits the online journal Romantic Textualities: Literature and Print Culture, 1780–1840. Currently he is working on an English translation of Fantasmagoriana with Professor Fabio Camilletti. A self-professed ‘archive-sleuth’, Maximiliaan can usually be found rummaging in an archive somewhere in Germany or England.

Elinor Shaffer is a Life Member of Clare Hall, having been a Research Fellow of the College as a postgraduate. She holds a BA and MA from Oxford, and a PhD from Columbia, where she was supervised by Lionel Trilling, and wrote her thesis in Comparative Literature on the poet Coleridge and German thought, published as ‘Kubla Khan’ and The Fall of Jerusalem (1975).  She is a founder of the British Comparative Literature Association and edited its journal Comparative Criticism from its inception to 2004. In a long series of books on the Reception of British and Irish Authors in Europe, the latest is The Reception of Joseph Conrad in Europe (2022), a writer who belongs as much to World Literature as to English.  A Fellow of the British Academy, Elinor is happy to pursue her lifelong interests in English and German Romanticism in the newer forms of the Clare Hall Colloquium and Zoom.

Pictured: De winkel van boekhandelaar Pieter Meijer Warnars op de Vijgendam in Amsterdam, Johannes Jelgerhuis, 1820 (The shop of bookseller Pieter Meijer Warnars on the Vijgendam in Amsterdam, Johannes Jelgerhuis, 1820).