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Trent Editions
'Trent Editions, the excellent in-house imprint of Nottingham Trent University'


   Postcolonial Writings


Shoshee Chunder Dutt: SELECTIONS FROM 'BENGALIANA'                                         
Edited by Alex Tickell
Price: £9.99   ISBN 1 84233 049 7
One of the earliest Indian authors to publish fiction in English, Shoshee Chunder Dutt was a prolific essayist, poet, historian and novelist, and a perceptive social commentator. A member of the gifted Dutt family of Calcutta, his writing is a fascinating window on the colonial 'contact zone' of the early nineteenth century. In Selections from 'Bengaliana' some of his most significant essays and short stories are reproduced for the first time, including 'Shunkur', the only fictional account of the 1857 rebellion from an Indian perspective, and 'Reminiscences of a Kerani's Life', a satirical memoir of his career in the East India Company treasury. Also included in this edition is 'The Republic of Orissa' (1845), one of the first Indian-English representations of anti-colonial struggle, and a rediscovered companion piece by Shoshee's cousin, Kylas Chunder Dutt, entitled 'A Journal of Forty-Eight Hours of the Year 1945' (1835). This edition provides an introduction to Shoshee's life and work, textual notes and a full glossary of Bengali terms.


Mabel Dove: SELECTED WRITINGS OF A PIONEER WEST AFRICAN FEMINIST
Edited by Stephanie Newell and Audrey Gadzekpo
Price: £8.99 ISBN 1 84233 097 7

This book brings together for the first time an extensive selection of Mabel Dove's journalistic and creative writing—work originally published in West African newspapers between 1931 and 1966. Mabel Dove (1905-1984) was one of the few female writers—and one of the first feminist thinkers—to produce newspaper articles on a regular basis in Ghana. Popular with male and female readers alike, her immense journalistic output covered issues such as women's rights and women's writing in the colonial period, education, culture and politics in West Africa. Stretching from the 'stormy 1930s' to the dramatic coup which unseated Nkrumah in 1966, the articles included here track a major period of Ghanaian women's literature.


Cornelia Sorabji: INDIA CALLING
Edited by Elleke Boehmer and Naella Grew
Price: £9.99  ISBN 1 84233 077 2


Cornelia Sorabji (1866-1954), the pioneering Indian lawyer and woman of letters, spent her life in a long struggle to open public institutions to women in India. She was the first woman to graduate from Bombay University and the first to be granted a B.C.L. degree from the University of Oxford. As she records in her compelling autobiography India Calling (1932), Cornelia Sorabji worked for many years in imperial India as Ladies' Legal Advisor representing women 'behind the veil'. Parsee by background, yet 'brought up English', an imperial civil servant mistreated by the imperial bureaucracy, a pro-woman non-feminist, Cornelia Sorabji embodied some of the most powerful contradictions of empire of her time. India Calling is her powerful, path-breaking story.


Alex La Guma: A WALK IN THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES
Edited by Nahem Yousaf
Price: £9.99 ISBN 1 84233 122 1


Alex La Guma’s 1962 novella, first published in Nigeria after being smuggled out of South Africa, follows the events of a single night in Cape Town’s District Six. At the centre of this gripping narrative is La Guma’s hero, Michael Adonis. Nursing his anger at being sacked by his white boss from his job as a sheet-metal worker, Adonis wanders through the night like a dispossessed ghost. The victim of apartheid’s racist laws, he is too self-absorbed in his impotent anger to articulate his frustration, and too narrowly focused on his own troubles to realise that his lot is shared by all those that the State labels ‘non-whites’. A Walk in the Night is not only the story of Adonis, but of his friends and their antagonists. It is also the story of ‘District Six’, which is as much a character as the human protagonists.

FROM REVIEWS OF LA GUMA’S WORK

‘An iron statement of things as they are, with no false comforts offered and the dawn of a very distant hope.’ (The Observer)

‘… humane, careful and very moving; it is propaganda for the truth, a work of art.’ (New Statesman)



   Poetry Recoveries

William Barnes: THE POEMS OF WILLIAM BARNES
Edited, with a critical commentary, by Val Shepherd
Price: £7.99  ISBN 0 905 48895 4

William Barnes (1801-1886) is justly renowned for poems which, using their own Dorset dialect, speak out for the agricultural labouring families of the nineteenth-century Blackmoor Vale. Many of these expressions of village and private life appear in this Trent Edition but, in addition, a selection of the little known poems that Barnes wrote in Standard English is also included. These, like the dialect poems, are imbued with the clear and delicate colours of wild flowers, the noise and movement of birds and animals in field and farm yard, the casual conversations of friends and, above all, the affection that binds together husbands, wives and children. Gerard Manley Hopkins believed that Barnes gave ‘flesh and tongue’ to Dorset life and landscape. He did so with a subtle and intricate versification which may have influenced the poetry of Thomas Hardy, his friend and neighbour, who wrote that Barnes work would continue to be read when much English literature had been forgotten.

The painting on the front cover is by William Barnes and is reproduced by permission of the Dorset County Museum.
 


Robert Bloomfield: SELECTED POEMS, revised and enlarged version
Edited by John Goodridge and John Lucas, Intro. by John Lucas.
Price: £9.99   ISBN 1-84233-121-3


Robert Bloomfield (1766-1823), was the most spectacularly successful of the self-taught ‘peasant poets’ of the Romantic period, selling 26,000 copies in three years of his first book The Farmer’s Boy (1800), and winning the praise of Wordsworth and John Clare, who called him ‘Our English Theocritus’. Having fallen into neglect in the twentienth century, Bloomfield is attracting new interest from readers and critics in the twenty-first. The Robert Bloomfield society was founded in 2001, and Bloomfield is the subject of a new collection of scholarly essays, Robert Bloomfield: Lyric, Class, and the Romantic Canon (Bucknell University Press, 2006).

This selection of Bloomfield's poems was originally published in 1998 and was the first scholarly edition of his work. The present revised and enlarged second edition substantially increases the amount of poetry and offers a new and textually important edition of the The Farmer's Boy, Bloomfield's most important poem. Bloomfield thought that his patron Capel Lofft had altered the texd excessively, and so we have here completely restored Bloomfield's own, much fresher text, from the autograph manuscript at Harvard University. The edition includes a selection of Bloomfield's prose prefaces, explanatory notes, a chronology of Bloomfield's life, and a list of further reading.

From Reviews Of The First Edition

'Offers a fine selection of poetry and prose pieces, and a useful bibliography and introduction'. (The Year's Work in English Studies)

'Selected Poems is judicious, very well-priced and fairly generous selection from Bloomfield, and one which is scrupulously edited.' (BARS Bulletin & Review)

John Goodridge is Professor of English at Nottingham Trent University, and John Lucas is Emeritus Professor of English at Loughborough and Nottingham Trent Universities.

John Clare: THE LIVING YEAR 1841
Edited, with an introduction and notes, by Tim Chilcott.
Price: £7.99 ISBN 0 905 488 55 5


1841 was one of the most productive, varied, and imaginatively moving periods of John Clare’s long poetic career. Against a background of asylum, escape home, and then forced removal to a second asylum, he wrote during this single year over 3,000 lines of original poetry and paraphrase, in addition to a substantial body of prose.

John Clare: The Living Year brings this material together for the first time. Here it is possible to trace the evolution of Clare’s imagination as the year unfolded. Both the depth and the range of his creative engagement become apparent, as he explores
fundamental issues of human identity and experience, in modes As different as satire and elegy, autobiography and song. The result is a compelling account of Clare’s perceptions as he responded to a momentous year in his life.

Tim Chilcott has written full length studies of Clare’s work, and of Clare’s first publisher John Taylor. He has retired as Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at University College, Chichester.



John Dyer: SELECTED POETRY AND PROSE
Edited, with an introduction and notes, by John Goodridge
Price: £7.99  ISBN 1 842 330 15 2


The Anglo-Welsh poet John Dyer (1699-1757) is one of the great restless, enquiring figures of eighteenth-century British culture. A painter as well as a poet, he was a member of the talented Aaron Hill circle, and is sometimes described as the ‘godfather’ of the picturesque movement. His most famous poem Grongar Hill (1726), lovingly describes the Carmarthenshire landscape of his youth. After training as a painter under Jonathan Richardson in London, Dyer visited Italy, and went on to become a travelling painter in the Welsh-English border counties. He was later a working farmer, before serving as a parish priest in Leicestershire and Lincolnshire. The major poem of his middle years, The Ruins of Rome (1740), marks an important moment in the history of attitudes to classical civilization. Dyer’s last great poem, The Fleece (1757), an epic account of the textile industry, is the high point of the English georgic tradition of agricultural poetry. The recent rediscoveries of Dyer’s notebooks and paintings, and the restoration of his birthplace and its gardens at Aberglasney, have sparked fresh interest in Dyer. This edition, marking the tercentenary of his birth, is the first new selection of his writings since 1930, and the fullest ever printed. It includes all Dyer’s shorter poems, substantial extracts from The Ruins of Rome and The Fleece, verse fragments and plans and a selection of letters and prose.

John Goodridge is a Professor of English at Nottingham Trent University.



Randall Swingler: SELECTED POEMS
Edited with an introduction and notes, by Andy Croft.
Price: £7.99 ISBN 1 842330 14 4

Randall Swingler (1909-67) is the missing lyric poet of the 1930s and 1940s. Poet, playwright, novelist, editor and critic, his words set to music by distinguished composers of his generation, nephew and godson of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Swingler was the best-known poet active in the British Communist Party. In the 1930s he wrote for the Group Theatre, Unity Theatre and Workers Musical Association. He edited the Left Book Club's The Left Song Book, the books page of the Daily Worker, and Left Review (publishing the famous 'Authors Take Sides on the Spanish War'). He wrote the chorale finale to Alan Bush's Piano Concerto No. 1, and (with Auden) the libretto for Britten's Ballad of Heroes. During World War Two, Swingler served with the Eighth Army in Africa and Italy (including Anzio and Salerno) and was awarded the Military Medal for bravery. After the War, he edited the radical Fitzrovian magazines, Our Time, Arena and Circus and was on the editorial board of the New Reasoner.

Swingler's poetry provides a unique record of his times, from the romantic Communism of the early thirties and the campaigning years of the Popular Front, through the war in Italy and the anti-Fascist victory of 1945 to the disappointed hopes of Cold War Europe. Bringing together his poetry for the first time, Selected Poems is an introduction to the work of an undeservedly-forgotten figure and a challenge to our understanding of a remarkable period of English literary history.

Andy Croft is a poet and community-writing activist in Middlesbrough. He has written and broadcast widely on the literary history of the Labour Movement, including Red Letter Days, (1990), Out of the Old Earth (1994) and A Weapon in the Struggle: the Cultural History of the Communist Party in Britain (1998). He has published three books of poetry.



Frank Thompson: SELECTED POEMS
Edited by Dorothy and Kate Thompson
Price: £8.99 ISBN 1 84233 070 5

Frank Thompson, born in 1920 and brother of E.P. Thompson, was fighting with the partisans in Bulgaria when he was killed in 1944. Among his papers he left a large number of poems, the product of his life long commitment to poetry. A few of these have been published in anthologies but most have remained known only to his family.

This selection has been made by his niece and sister-in-law, neither of whom knew him in life. Frank Thompson, converted by Iris Murdoch to Communism on the eve of World War Two, and in letters to Iris, as well as to his brother and his parents, wrote about his deepest feelings while he was on active service in the war after volunteering; some of the poems in this collection are taken from a file of typed and manuscript versions which was among Iris's papers and which probably represents a selection he had made for her from his work.

Kate Thompson is a professional writer who has won awards for her poetry and prose writing. She was born in 1956 and now lives and works in Ireland. Dorothy Thompson is an historian who has written about nineteenth century British history.


Charles Churchill: SELECTED POETRY
Edited by Adam Rounce
Price: £8.99  ISBN 1 84233 096 9

The satirist Charles Churchill (1731-64) published all of his poetry in a brief period between 1761 and his death three years later. His work was immensely popular from the time of his early death to the end of the eighteenth century, and his admirers included William Cowper, Thomas Chatterton, and Byron, who was influenced very clearly by his satires. Churchill's friendship with the controversial politician John Wilkes led to his help in the composition of Wilkes's journal, The North Briton (1762-3), and to a stream of satires directed against the perceived hypocrisies, excesses and inequities of the administration of John Stuart, Third Earl of Bute. Churchill also inveighed against establishment double-standards and corruption, the problems of colonialism and examples of artistic affectation, and raised larger questions about the supposed progress of civilisation. His satiric targets include Samuel Johnson, William Warburton, Thomas Gray, Tobias Smollett, William Hogarth, and James Macpherson, and his poems, a virtual record of the artistic and political scandals of his time, take up the angry legacy of the late satirical work of Alexander Pope. To read Churchill is to experience the often ferocious political world of the early 1760s and to understand how his controversial poetry remains highly relevant.

This selection of Churchill's work draws on different aspects of his career to offer a representative picture: it includes his most acclaimed and substantial poems, The Prophecy of Famine, An Epistle to William Hogarth, and the 'Dedication to the Sermons'. The text is not modernised, and the notes offer an updating of precious editions, along with much new information.



Nancy Cunard: POEMS OF NANCY CUNARD from the Bodleian Library
Edited by John Lucas
Price: £8.99  ISBN 1 84233 107 8

Nancy Cunard (1896- 1965) was a remarkable woman, most famous now perhaps for the vast anthology Negro (1934), which she put together with her sometime lover, the jazz pianist, Henry Crowder, and the for the pamphlet she edited in 1937, Authors Take sides on the Spanish War. A renowned beauty, she used her inherited wealth to aid various radical causes and, in 1928, to set up the Hours Press in France. Among its ealiest publications was a small collection of poems, Whorescope, by the then unknown Samuel Beckett.

Cunard published four collections of her own poems and in 1943, at the suggestion of Edward Thompson (father of the historian E.P. Thompson, and poetry editor for
the publishers Benn), she began to assemble all the verse she wished to preserve, for an intended collected edition. Thompson died in 1944 and the typescript of the poems was left among his papers. These were eventually deposited at the Bodleian, and Cunard's poems have been retrieved from this typescript by the kind permission of Dorothy Thompson, to form the text of the present edition.


The Romantic-Era

Carl Thompson: Romantic-Era Shipwreck Narratives
Edited, with an introduction and notes, by Carl Thompson
Price: £9.99   ISBN 1 84233 129 3


The shipwreck narrative was a popular and prolific, if now largely forgotten, branch of Romantic-era print culture. Yet there are many fascinating and deeply moving accounts to be found in this voluminous literature. And just as importantly, the genre also offers a wealth of insights into a broad range of current academic debates. It was no accident or quirk of literary taste that shipwreck narratives were so popular in the Romantic period: they were compelling reading because in diverse ways they touched on some of the most important issues of the day. For a nation like Britain where military and economic power and even cultural identity were predicated on maritime prowess, shipwrecks were profoundly troubling events.


In shipwreck narratives a maritime culture had to confront and negotiate with its grreatest nightmare, so that these narratives possess a complex ideological dimension. As a result, the genre has much to tell us about the construction of British identity in this period, while shedding equally valuable light on British attitudes to a range of cultural 'Others', and the mechanisms by which images of such 'Others' were fashioned and disseminated.

Shipwreck narratives also provide a fascinating new perspective on topics as diverse as Romantic-era popular culture, the sublime, sentimentalism and sensationalism, popular representations of the sailor, the literature of religious and moral improvement, and travel writing.


Carl Thompson is a Lecturer in English at Nottingham Trent University.


    Early Modern Women's Writing


Rose Thurgood and Cicely Johnson: SCRIPTURE WOMEN
Edited, with an introduction and notes, by Naomi Baker
Price: £8.99   ISBN 1 84233 048 9


A Lecture of Repentance (1636-7) and 'Fanatical Reveries' (c. 1636-7) are two of the earliest known English conversion narratives. Remarkably, both accounts were written by women. Most available seventeenth-century women's writing originates from elite levels of society, but Cicely Johnson was from the 'middling sort', while Rose Thurgood was poor to the point of starvation. Both women were Puritans, and both were also connected with two infamous heretical prophets. Yet despite their similarities, the social differences between them are signalled throughout their accounts. The introduction to the texts outlines the historical and cultural background of the women and their works, including a discussion of the relationship between the authors' social positions and the identities that they construct in their narratives. As well as making these striking accounts available in print for the first time, this edition also demonstrates some of the ways in which such life writings can inform our understanding of wider issues of class, gender, religion and identity in early modern England.


Julia Palmer: THE 'CENTURIES' OF JULIA PALMER
Edited by V. Burke and E. Clarke
Price: £9.99 ISBN 1 84233 0616
 

Julia Palmer's manuscript represents a very early collection of poetry by a middle-class, self-taught woman. A fervent Presbyterian, she lived in Restoration Westminster and was very aware of the embattled state of Nonconformists under Charles II. The poems were probably circulated or sung among Nonconformists in her own and possibly other congregations as a source of encouragement to the faithful. Her personal, emotional spirituality was to become typical of Dissenting poetry in the eighteenth century, but is extemely unusual in religious poetry of the seventeenth century.

These poems offer a full illustration of the idioms, doctrine and Biblical interpretation characteristic of Presbyterian Calvinism. They were written at a time of unprecedented religious and political activity, and are evidence of the reaction of the Nonconformist 'middling sort', whose resistance was so feared by the King and his ministers, to the Declaration of Indulgence in 1672. They represent a style of religious poetry considered to be unrhetorical and therefore less likely to be contaminated by self-display, particularly if the author were a woman. Clearly valued within this community---the manuscript was left to a wealthy Dissenter and preserved long enough to be collected by the antiquarian Sir Thomas Phillips in the nineteenth century---the rhetoric of Palmer's poetry is very dfferent from that of the literary elite in her period, but it deserves attention in any account of literary activity in seventeenth-century England.

   American Recoveries

Harriet E. Wilson: OUR NIG, OR, SKETCHES FORM THE LIFE OF A FREE BLACK
Edited, with an introduction and notes by R. J. Ellis
Price: £6.99 ISBN 0 0905 48884 9

First published in Boston in 1859, Our Nig, or, Sketches form the Life of a Free Black offers a harrowing portrait of the sadistic maltreatment of Alfrado, a young female African American bond servant. It shows how racism can infect the whole body politic and how enslavement can exist not just as a legally defined institution but also as an apparatus of social practices and norms, even in a slave-free State, namely Massachusetts. The novel thus shows how slavery can indeed exist in ‘freedom’.

Our Nig is a milestone in African American writing. It stands as the first published novel to be written by an African American woman and the first African American novel to be published in the USA.Limited in its circulation, Our Nig remained hardly noticed until brought back to the public’s attention in 1983, when Henry Louis Gates Jr. released a facsimile edition. Only then did it start to receive the acclaim it deserved. This is the first modern edition to be published.

R.J. Ellis is chair of the American and Canadian Studies Department at the University of Birmingham.



Stephen Crane: MAGGIE: A GIRL OF THE STREETS 1893 EDITION.  
Edited with an introduction and notes, by Christopher Gair.
Price: £7.99 ISBN 1 84233 015 2

The first edition of Stephen Crane's Maggie: A Girl of the Streets was published in 1893 under the pseudonym Johnston Smith. Most reprints of the novel have followed the revised 1896 text, yet Crane made a number of cuts and changes for this later edition. Most significantly, he deleted much of a paragraph describing a menacing encounter Maggie has just before her death. Once this cut is restored, the implications of her death are substantially altered, a shift above all marked by a fundamental adjustment to the gender politics of the book.

Maggie is plainly an important text written at a time when the United States were in the midst of a series of economic and cultural crises and the widespread sense of optimism in America after the Civil War was steadily being replaced by disillusion. Political and commercial corruption were rightly perceived to characterize business life as the nineteenth century drew to a close. The gradual shift in these decades from the stereotype of the thrifty, hard-working American to a vision of selfhood defined by consumption stemmed from a recognition that, in an increasingly urbanised society, traditional ideas about what Americans should aspire to were rapidly becoming anachronistic. In Maggie, Crane offers a particularly radical commentary on this America as manifest in the nineteenth century's final decade.

With its frank portrait of slum tenement life and prostitution, the book was in danger of offending the sensibilities of a reading public as yet unacquainted with the vigorous naturalist fictions of Frank Norris, Jack London and Theodore Dreiser. As such, Maggie, a Girl of the Streets ranks in importance alongside Crane's other masterpiece, The Red Badge of Courage.

Christopher Gair is Lecturer in American Studies at the University of Birmingham.


Henry James: HAWTHORNE
Edited, with an introduction and notes, by Kate Fullbrook
Price: £6.99  ISBN 0 905 48843 1

When first published in 1879 Hawthorne was attacked for its stress upon the provinciality of American culture and taste, which James represented as constraining Nathaniel Hawthorne. But if biography takes the form of a complex negotiation between the biographer’s self and the historical subject, then James’s treatment of Hawthorne serves as a fascinating delineation of his own literary and cultural self.

Hawthorne not only stands as an intriguing commentary by one important writer on another but also speaks tellingly about the self-conscious development of both American and modern culture. Hawthorne is famously depicted as an exquisite ‘romancer’ of ‘light and capricious’ intellect, whilst the Jamesian aesthetic self, in the form of the generous, amused, and tolerant narrative voice of Hawthorne, seeks to distance itself from his legacy, presuming its own cultural maturity.

Yet, perversely, this attempt at differentiation illuminates the anxious relationship between Hawthorne and James, and beyond, to T.S.Eliot, Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, and the mainstream of late American modernism. Deep ironies reside in James’s words. ‘Whatever may have been Hawthorne’s private lot, he has the importance of geing the most beautiful and most eminent representative of a literature. The importance of the literature may be questioned, but at any rate, in the field of letters, Hawthorne is the most valuable example of the American genius’.

Kate Fulbrook, who died in 2003, was Professor of English at the University of the West of England.


   Radical Fictions

Storm Jameson: IN THE SECOND YEAR
Edited by Stan Smith
Price: £7.99  ISBN 1 84233 094 2

In the Second Year, originally published in 1936, offers a vivid premonition of a British fascist regime only five years in the future, modelling its narrative on the events of Hitler's second year in power and his Night of the Long Knives. As much a critique of Britain in 1936 as a warning of what might still be averted by determined action, the novel is not however a political tract but an eminently readable work of fiction. Its subtle characterisation and dramatic plotting distiguish it from left-wing formula novels of the 1930s, and underpin the shrewd analysis of contemporary states of mind left, right and centre, all of which are found wanting. Essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the interwar years, it is also, in the sheer power of its story-telling, an enthralling novel for the general reader, meriting comparison with such dystopian fictions as Nineteen Eighty-Four, Brave New World, and Rex Warner's The Aerodrome. Considered by Jameson to be her best work, In the Second Year is, quite simply, a very good novel.

It is a scandal that, of the nearly seventy books written by the socialist and feminist author, Margaret Storm Jameson (1891-1986), not one is currently in print. This reprinting of In the Second Year is long overdue, and rectifies in small part this state of affairs.



Stanley Middleton: HARRIS'S REQUIEM
Edited by David Belbin
Price: £9.99 ISBN 1 84233 123 X


Thomas Harris is on the cusp of great success as a classical composer. But for every success he gets a knock back. This gripping, superbly crafted novel portrays the classical music world of the late fifties. It is the first paperback editions of Harris’s Requiem, Stanley Middleton’s second novel and his personal favourite.

Stanley Middleton is the author of forty-three novels, all of them first published by Hutchinson. ‘Holiday’ won The Booker Prize in 1973. After a spell in India during the Second World War, he worked as a school teacher until retirement.

‘Every page is stamped with its author’s sharp, crotchety, attractive ego-bristling, staccato dialogue, sardonic aphorisms about music or sex or ambitious local bigwigs.’



Ellen Wilkinson: CLASH
Edited by Ian Haywood and Maroula Joannou
Price: £8.99  ISBN 1 84233 069 1

Ellen Wilkinson, the first woman Labour MP, is best remembered for leading a march of unemployed from her Jarrow constituency to London in 1936. Her first novel Clash is set a decade earlier, during the General Strike and Miners' Lock-Out of 1926. Wilkinson was sent by the TUC to tour the country in support of the strikers, and the book bears all the marks of her first-hand experience.

Clash moves skilfully between the comfortable world of the Bloomsbury artistic set and the poverty-stricken communities of the Yorkshire coalfields. The momentous events of the period are unfolded around the life of Joan Craig, a young trade union official torn between her commitment to the workers' cause and her romantic love for a man not sharing her socialist ideals. The book raises questions about the relationship between the personal and the political and the public and the private that still resonate today. This is the first critical edition of Wilkinson's novel.



H.G. Wells: THE CROQUET PLAYER
Edited, with an introduction and notes, by John Hammond
Price: £6.99  ISBN 0 905 48889 X

First published in London by Chatto and Windus in 1936, and in New York by the Viking Press in 1937, The Croquet Player has never been subsequently reprinted.

This is astonishing, given the extent to which this novella stands as a prescient forecast of the turmoil in Europe leading up to the start of World War Two and the events that happened in the war itself: 'little children killed in air-raids in the street'.

This novella sees Wells at his brilliant best, in full narrative control of his fantastic fable.

John Hammond is founder and President of the H. G. Wells Society.


   Radical Recoveries

George Garrett: THE COLLECTED GEORGE GARRETT
Edited with an introduction and notes, by Michael Murphy.
Price: £7.99 ISBN 0 0905 488 48 2

All but ignored by post-war critics, George Garrett’s stories and reportage were praised by some of the most influential writers of the 1930’s, including George Orwell, Sylvia Townsend Warner and John Lehmann. His ability to shift from realism to the symbolic has been likened to Conrad, making his work indispensable to anyone interested in the full range of British writing during the decade.

Born on Merseyside in 1896, Garret’s stories vividly record the experiences of a merchant seaman during the First World War and his return to the working-class realities of ‘a land fit for heroes.’ Also included are Garrett’s first-hand accounts of life on the breadline in twenties Liverpool, and of the 1922 Hunger March. Both display his powers as a satirist and social critic in the tradition of Defoe.

The Collected George Garrett also contains his critical ripostes to Conrad’s ‘The Nigger of the Narcissus’, and an extract from his essay on Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The collection concludes with a previously unpublished autobiographical sketch set in the pre-1914 docklands of Liverpool.

Michael Murphy’s poems, essays, and reviews have appeared in Critical Survey, London Magazine, Miscelania, Poetry Ireland Review and Symbiosis. His first collection poems, after Attila, is published by Shoestring Press. Michael is a Lecturer in English at Nottingham Trent University.


EXHIBITION EXTRAORDINARY!! RADICAL BROADSIDES OF THE MID 1790s
Edited with an introduction, commentary and notes, by John Barrell.
Price: £10.99 ISBN 1 84233 052 7

A new, witty and immensely inventive form of political propaganda appeared in London in the mid-1790s: a series of mock-advertisements and other public announcements which represented the activities of George III, of the government of William Pitt, and of the leaders of the British Army fighting the French Republic, as so many spectacles and entertainments: as plays, pantomimes, auction sales, art-exhibitions, ceremonial processions, and magic-shows.

These satires use all the design know-how and typographical high jinks of late eighteenth century street advertising, and many of them remain hilariously funny despite the passage of 200 years. They also raise some fascinating questions, about who wrote them, how they were disseminated, their audience, and the relations between 'polite' politicians and the popular radicalism in the years of the French Revolution. This book presents 26 of these satires, together with an explanatory Introduction and full commentary. Exhibition Extraordinary!! will fascinate all those interested in political history and the history of the theatre, as well as students and scholars with an interest in British culture during the French Revolution.

John Barrell is Professor of English in the Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies at the University of York. He is the author of a number of books on eighteenth and early nineteenth century literature, art and politics, most recently Imagining the King's Death (Oxford, 2000).


 
Hannah More: TALES FOR THE COMMON PEOPLE AND OTHER CHEAP REPOSITORY TRACTS
Edited by Clare MacDonald Shaw
Price: £9.99 ISBN 1 84233 062 4

Hannah More's work, neglected for much of the twentieth century, is being critically evaluated. She gave the controversial title Tales for the Common People to a selection of her Cheap Repository Tracts, first published between 1795 and 1798 and distributed across the nation to more than two million people in a remarkable cultural experiment which was politically counter-revolutionary and morally radical. Fissures in her texts reveal creative conflict as she advocates the values of the prevailing ideology while seeking to modify them.
These simple but influential texts deserve reading by students of women's writing, social historians and anyone interested in methods of converting minds by the use of fiction. The present edition draws on the early chapbook versions of these tracts, printing some with their original woodcuts.

Edited, with an introduction and notes, by Clare MacDonald Shaw, formerly a Senior Lecturer in English at Nottingham Trent University.



Joe Kenyon: A PASSION FOR JUSTICE . The stories of Joe Kenyon
Edited by David Donnison
Price: £8.99 ISBN 1 84233 082 9

Joe Kenyon was born into a miner's family in Carlton village, near Barnsley in Yorkshire, in 1915. After his father contracted tuberculosis and was confined in sanitoria, life was very hard for the Kenyons. The children were often unable to go to school and Joe was largely self-educated. Down the pit by the age of fourteen, he continued to read voraciously. Although he tried other jobs from time to time, he always returned to the Barnsley coal pits. When the dust finally caught up with Joe Kenyon in 1960, compelling him to leave colliery work, he became an organiser for the National Council of Labour Colleges, a Trades Union official and a welfare rights specialist in a Home Office Community Development Project. Spoken in Joe Kenyon's gentle Barnsley accent, these stories of his life come out of a Yorkshire working-class oral tradition. Told to his wife, Irene, when she lay dying of cancer and typed up later, they are always vivid, poignant, enraging, uproarious - posing ever-relevant moral and political questions. His book is as an invaluable source for all concerned with social, political history, and a genuine work of literature that will fascinate readers of all ages.


Nan Green: A CHRONICLE OF SMALL BEER
Edited by R.J. Ellis, with an introduction by Martin Green
Price: £6.99  ISBN 1 84233 105 1
 
Nan Green (1904-1984) dedicated her life to what she identified as the cause of humanity. Born in Nottingham and brought up in Beeston and Birmingham, she grew into adulthood witnessing the achievements of the suffragettes, First World War rationing, the rise of Labour in the 1920s and the Depression - a period during which she firstly rebelled against her family and then its conservative politics. She also became increasingly politically active, first within the Labour movement, then within the Communist Party.
During this period she married a fellow activist, became a mother and then, unconventionally, followed her husband to Spain to join the Republican cause. Her husband died in action on the very last day that the International Brigades fought the fascists, and Nan Green returned to the United Kingdom to take up her campaigning for the Republican cause and its refugees during World War Two. After the war she became involved in Communist activities within the Peace Movement. Her Party work eventually took her to China as a translator from where, after a brief visit to apartheid South Africa, she returned to the United Kingdom and continuing work for the veterans of the Spanish International Brigades and other socialist causes. 

Nan Green's memoirs simply but eloquently trace this political and geographical pilgrimage, with its constant campaigning, activism, and the dilemmas these posed, as the Communist movement adjusted to the shocks of the Hitler-Stalin pact, the Soviet Russian show trials and other excesses, and the transformative convolutions of Chinese communism under Mao Tse-tung. A Chronicle of Small Beer is a moving tale of her continuing commitment in the face of the very different kinds of adversity and fulfilment that she experienced.


Ronald Blythe : A WRITER'S DAY-BOOK
Price: £9.99 ISBN 1 84233 124 8 

Trent Essays is an occasional series of commissioned volumes in which key practitioners write critically on aspects of creative writing and on other writers and their works. In A Writer’s Day-book Ronald Blythe, the eminent author of Akenfield, Divine Landscapes and many other notable titles, offers a lively selection from the ‘day-book’ of his reading and writing life, focusing on a wide range of writers who have inspired him, from Thomas Traherne to Virginia Woolf, Laurie Lee to Russell Hoban. This is Ronald Blythe’s second title for Trent, following his well-received collection of edited talks ‘on and around’ John Clare, Talking About John Clare (1999). Clare remains a key figure in this second book, along with other Blythe touchstones such as the writers and artists of the First World War, and the representation of the rural world.


Ronald Blythe : TALKING ABOUT JOHN CLARE
Price: £7.99 ISBN 0 905 488 44 X 

Writers and poets are often strongly drawn to John Clare (1793-1864), the greatest poet of English rural life. Ronald Blythe's love for Clare began when a friend introduced him to Sidney Keyes's 1941 verse-tribute to Clare, and blossomed when he was invited to be the President of the newly formed John Clare Society. His talks about Clare are gathered together for the first time here. Written over three decades, they offer a unique contibution to the study of Clare and his tradition, tracing the qualities that have drawn writers and readers to Clare, and considering Clare's place in the changing rural world.

Ronald Blythe is the President of the John Clare Society, and one of our most eminent rural writers. His famous account of a Suffolk village, Akenfield, has recently been re-issued by Penquin as a Twentieth Century Classic.

His most recent publications are a book of essays, Going to See George and Other Outings (Long Barn Books, 1999); First Friends (Viking Penquin, 1999), a study of the young Paul and John Nash and Dora Carrington and their relationships in the period 1910-1920; and Out of the Valley (Viking Penquin, 2000), a journal in the style of Word from Wormingford.



Peter Porter: SAVING FROM THE WRECK
Price: £8.99 ISBN 1 84233 055 1
 
Saving From The Wreck: Essays on Poetry brings together a number of Peter Porter's critical essays on poetry. The essays, which started life as lectures, addresses, or in one instance a radio talk, range in subject matter from the Earl of Rochester through Pope, Christopher Smart, George Crabbe and Robert Browning to Wallace Stevens and John Ashbery, and from meditations on poetry and music to the difficulties and rewards of translation. They are witty, deeply informed, fluently conversational and, as is to be expected, of unfailing interest to those concerned with the craft of poetry.

Peter Porter has been described as 'one of the few poets equal to our serious times'. When his two-volume Collected Poems was published in 1999 it was widely hailed as demonstrating beyond doubt Porter's right to be considered as among the finest of contemporary poets.

With an introduction by John Lucas.



John Lucas: STARTING TO EXPLAIN: ESSAYS ON TWENTIETH CENTURY BRITISH AND IRISH POETRY
Price: £9.99 ISBN 1 84233 086 1
 
Starting To Explain: Essays on Twentieth Century British and Irish Poetry brings together work produced over the past twenty years by a critic whom Terry Eagleton described in The Independent On Sunday as possessing 'a quick, erudite sense of English social history', and whose writing on modern poets has been praised in the New Statesman for its 'alert commitment to the craft of poetry'.

Starting to Explain begins with a consideration of Hardy's Wessex Poems and ends with an essay on contemporary anthologies. In between come extended essays on poets D.H. Lawrence, Ivor Gurney, edgell Rickword, Sylvia Townsend Warner, Roy Fuller, W.S. Graham, Philip Larkin, Roy Fisher, Seamus Heaney and others, alongside more general pieces on such subjects as poetry and politics and poetry and jazz.

John Lucas, emeritus Professor of English at The Nottingham Trent University, is the author of six collections of poetry, most recently A World Perhaps: New and Selected Poems, and of numerous works of criticism and literary scholarship. Since 1994 he has been publisher of Shoestring Press.



Jim Burns, Beats, Bohemians and Intellectuals
Price: £7.99 ISBN 0 905 488 57 1
 
Expatriates in Paris in the 1920s, radical writers in the 1930s, New York Intellectuals in the 1940s, Beat in the 1950: these are just some of the subjects covered in Beats, Bohemians and Intellectuals. Ranging over several decades, but interlocking at all times, the essays look at almost forgotten novelists like Robert McAlmon and Isaac Rosenfeld, offer fresh views of poets such as Kenneth Patchen and Kenneth Fearing, investigate the world of critics Irving Howe and Alfred Kazin, and inspect the lives of both major beat poets such as Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder and more minor Beat writers. In between they touch on the Spanish Civil War, the rise of Greenwich Village as a bohemian centre, the early poetry of Charles Bukowski, the place of women in the Beat literary canon, the curious life of the hipster idol, Lord Buckley and the role of little magazines in introducing new American writing to British readers. What is revealed by these essays is a vibrant and vital world of American literature and culture.

Jim Burns is a widely published poet and critic. His most recent collections of poems are Confessions of an Old Believer (Redbeck Press, 1966) and As Good a Reason As Any (Redbeck Press, 1999).

The collection is edited by John Freeman.