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Anne Woolley

2 Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Found , begun 1859, oil on canvas Browning’s poem is about four concepts of love: carnal, married, filial and divine. In Pippa Passes Siddal captures two of these in her opposing depictions of women, whilst showing how the boundary between them is not entirely solid. This dualism is more evident in another, very different work, a set of three rough sketches done to illustrate the Rossetti poem Sister Helen , first published in 1854. The sketches were not intended to be a narrative sequence; instead, as in the poems considered

in The poems of Elizabeth Siddal in context
Theorising the Cybergothic
Isabella van Elferen

This article theorizes the transgressive faculties of cyberspace‘s Gothic labyrinth, arguing that it is haunted by the ghost of material/information dualism. This ghost is embodied in cybergoth subculture: while cybergothic music creates a gateway to the borderland between biological and virtual realities, dancing enables cybergoths to transgress the boundaries between the two.

Gothic Studies
Val Scullion

This essay proposes that the polyphonic and transgressive aspects of Gothic forms are influenced by music. It examines formal connections between the sonnets of Sturm und Drang poet, Friedrich Hölderlin, their musical setting by Benjamin Britten, and Susan Hill‘s novel The Bird of Night, arguing that Hill and Britten have, in common, processes of writing or musical composition which mix together disparate discursive or musical components. These inter-genre borrowings suggest that the sound and compositional practices of certain types of music allow for the expression of tensions, dualities, transformations and extreme states of mind which the Gothic novel has developed its own tropes to express.

Gothic Studies
James Riley

This article considers the use made of William Blake by a range of writers associated with the ‘countercultural’ milieu of the 1960s, particularly those linked to its London-based literary context. Iain Sinclair is offered as a writer who, in his appreciation of Blake, stands apart from the poets linked to the anthology, Children of Albion (1969). The article unpacks this distinction, analysing Sinclair’s ‘topographic’ take in comparison to the ‘visionary’ mode of his contemporaries. Having established this dualism, the argument then questions the nature of the visionary poetics assumed to apply to the likes of key poets from the era. The work of Michael Horovitz is brought into view, as is that of Harry Fainlight. In essence, these multiple discourses point to the plurality of Blake as a figure of influence and the variation underpinning his literary utility in post-1960s poetry.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Open Access (free)
Space and the Speculative in James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues”
Maleda Belilgne

In a 1961 interview with the journalist Studs Terkel, James Baldwin offered a riveting assessment of Bessie Smith’s “Backwater Blues.” “It’s a fantastic kind of understatement,” Baldwin tells Terkel. “It’s the way I want to write.” Baldwin hears something in Bessie, a sonic and discursive quality he aspires to and identifies as “fantastic.” This essay considers the speculative undertones of Bessie’s blues and Baldwin’s literary realism. I argue that Bessie’s doubled vocalization in “Backwater Blues” lyrically declares her immobility and circumscription, while tonally staging freedom and boundlessness. Baldwin is drawn to this dual orientation and enunciation, a vocalization that in its iteration of the real transcends the social, spatial, and imaginative limitations of that order. If we read “Sonny’s Blues” the way Baldwin hears Bessie, as a fantastic kind of understatement, we discern subtle sonic and spatial iterations of the irreal. Attending to microtonal sounds in “Sonny’s Blues”—screams, whistling, jukeboxes—I show that the speculative emerges in Baldwin’s story when the sonic overrides the racialized inscription of space.

James Baldwin Review
The Urban Gothic of Fin-de-Siècle London and Gotham City
Erica McCrystal

Gothic literature set in fin-de-siècle London has often been argued to highlight duality. However, the urban Gothic truly flourishes through its liminality, which allows chaos and order to coexist. Texts such as Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray offer versions of a Gothic London that have the appearance of structure but are difficult to navigate. Likewise, the Batman franchise has embraced Gotham City as a setting that provides tensions between order and chaos. In Gotham, as in fin-de-siècle London, liminality puts pressures on apparent boundaries. While the urban Gothic initially developed through nineteenth century British texts, modern-day comics and films within the Batman franchise have allowed us to see how a multiverse normalises liminality and embraces multiple works to speak collectively about Gothic tensions. This article analyses the liminal nature of the urban Gothic in both cities side by side to argue that the urban Gothic’s liminal nature allows instability to reign.

Gothic Studies
John Hodgson

Postcolonial theory has yielded productive methodologies with which to examine an institution such as the John Rylands Library. This paper reinterprets aspects of the Library‘s history, especially its collecting practices, using Bhabha‘s concept of hybridity. The Library‘s founder, Enriqueta Rylands, embodied hybridity and colonial talking back in her remarkable trajectory from a Catholic upbringing in Cuba, via her conversion to Nonconformity and her marriage to Manchester‘s most successful cotton manufacturer, to her usurpation of the cultural hegemony in purchasing spectacular aristocratic collections for her foundation. Hybridity was embedded in many other aspects of the Library‘s development: it was established as a public library with a board of governors but its collections were largely shaped by Enriqueta‘s tastes and interests; it was independent until 1972, while maintaining very close links to the University of Manchester; it has always fulfilled a dual remit of addressing the research needs of scholars and attracting wider audiences; and it is simultaneously a library of printed books and manuscripts, an archive repository, and a gallery of visual materials.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Open Access (free)
Biography of a Radical Newspaper
Robert Poole

The newly digitised Manchester Observer (1818–22) was England’s leading radical newspaper at the time of the Peterloo meeting of August 1819, in which it played a central role. For a time it enjoyed the highest circulation of any provincial newspaper, holding a position comparable to that of the Chartist Northern Star twenty years later and pioneering dual publication in Manchester and London. Its columns provide insights into Manchester’s notoriously secretive local government and policing and into the labour and radical movements of its turbulent times. Rich materials in the Home Office papers in the National Archives reveal much about the relationship between radicals in London and in the provinces, and show how local magistrates conspired with government to hound the radical press in the north as prosecutions in London ran into trouble. This article also sheds new light on the founding of the Manchester Guardian, which endured as the Observer’s successor more by avoiding its disasters than by following its example. Despite the imprisonment of four of its main editors and proprietors the Manchester Observer battled on for five years before sinking in calmer water for lack of news.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Open Access (free)
Phoebe Shambaugh

from secondary reviews and discourse analysis to qualitative household surveys and participatory action research, they encourage us as academics and as practitioners to reflect on how we understand, learn and listen to people affected by conflict and disaster. The first research article, by Diego Meza, explores the discourses of humanitarianism, notably resilience and compassion as tools of governance and coercive power in the response to internal displacement in Colombia under President Santos (2010–18). Meza argues that through these dual languages of

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
A Belated but Welcome Theory of Change on Mental Health and Development
Laura Davidson

health spend. Furthermore, the interrelationship of the barriers identified by DfID is noteworthy. For example, in LMICs the common dual barriers of inadequate sustainable resources and the scale of social determinants such as poverty and inequality result in multiple obstacles, such as ‘lack of … health care and services and skilled workforce’ and ‘data and information’; ‘poor quality of limited services’; and ‘poor integration of physical and mental

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs