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London Nineteenth Century Studies Seminar: Lecturing the Atlantic Book Laun...

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Chancellor's Hall, Floor 1

Senate House

University of London

Malet Street

WC1E

United Kingdom

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The London Nineteenth Century Studies Seminar and Oxford University Press are pleased to present an evening of talks to celebrate the launch of Lecturing the Atlantic: Speech, Print and an Anglo-American Commons by Tom F. Wright.

In the early nineteenth-century, the public lecture emerged as one of the Anglo-American world’s most important cultural forms. On both sides of the Atlantic, audiences and performers transformed a cultural practice with origins in the medieval cloister into an unexpectedly modern flashpoint medium of public life.

Lecturing the Atlantic offers a fresh take on this neglected medium, bringing to life the tours of performers such as Frederick Douglass, Lola Montez, William Makepeace Thackeray and Ralph Waldo Emerson, and exploring the remarkable culture of newspaper commentary that allowed Victorian oratory to resonate far beyond the lecture hall.

Peter Gibian and Tom Wright will offer short talks on the role of voice in the nineteenth century public sphere in Britain and America, the legacy of the Victorian lecture hall, and how a deeper appreciation of the complex history of public speech might helps us understand own own media landscape.

Then we'll crack open some wine.


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Peter Gibian is Associate Professor of English at McGill University. He is the author of Oliver Wendell Holmes and the Culture of Conversation (Cambridge, 2001) and has published widely on themes of cosmopolitanism and performance in nineteenth century America. He is completing a book entitled '“Writing in America’s “Age of Conversation”: Talk Circles, the Literary Public Sphere, and the Formation of American Literature, 1830-1860'

Tom F. Wright is a Lecturer in English at the University of Sussex. In addition to Lecturing the Atlantic, he is editor of The Cosmopolitan Lyceum: Lecture Culture and the Globe in Nineteenth Century America (UMass, 2013) and has published numerous articles on nineteenth-century literary and cultural history. He is currently working on a new project tracing the emergence of the idea of charisma in the long nineteenth century.

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Chancellor's Hall, Floor 1

Senate House

University of London

Malet Street

WC1E

United Kingdom

View Map

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