Excellent scholarship by Marah Gubar, Claudia Nelson, Victoria Ford Smith, M. O. Grenby, Alexandra Valint, and others has more than demonstrated the importance of children’s literature to nineteenth-century culture more broadly. My first book contributed to that conversation, arguing that Romantic-era children’s tales helped shape the reading habits of the Victorians. Last summer, I signed
This summer is the 160th anniversary of a famous vacation: from June 11th to July 13th, 1857, Hans Christian Andersen sojourned with Charles Dickens and his family, at their home in Gad’s Hill. Dickens’s biographers tend to treat Andersen’s visit as something of a farce. Andersen was initially supposed to stay about a week, but he
My first book was published in February. For an academic, this is an entirely normal event: to progress in most humanities fields, you need a book. But it’s also a big deal. I started the book in 2008, as my doctoral dissertation, and it was a big part of my life for a long time.