Recent publications

Faculty across the School publish a wide range of critically-acclaimed work, from fiction, poetry and memoir, broadcast film, video and music to staged live performances. Our outputs include academic monographs and collections of essays, alongside a range of creative work and practice.

Featured below are some of our most recent publications and creative practice.  More details on our faculty members’ research can be found on their individual profile pages.

Nudity and Folly in Italian Literature from Dante to Leopardi

Nudity and Folly in Italian Literature from Dante to Leopardi, edited by Simon Gilson and Ambra Moroncini (Florence: Cesati, 2022), has just been released. The twelve chapters in the volume aim to present original research perspectives from Dante to Leopardi, that is, from the origins of Italian literature to the first great Italian lyric voice of the ‘modern’ world, exploring how nudity and folly have been drawn upon to consider the ambiguity implicit in the notion of truth when used to address historical, philosophical, political, religious, scientific and social discourses that are still very much relevant in our modern and contemporary world. The book is the result of a 3-year research project involving several scholars from universities in Italy, Great Britain, Ireland, and North America.

Modern British Nature Writing, 1789–2020

Dr Will Abberley co-authored Modern British Nature Writing, 1789–2020, published by Cambridge University Press in March 2022. 
The book comes from the team behind the AHRC-funded Land Lines nature writing project, and its two successful public engagement follow-on projects (Tracks, Traces, Trails: Nature Writing Beyond the Page and Tipping Points: Cultural Responses to Land Sharing in the North).  
Why do we speak so much of nature today when there is so little of it left? Prompted by this question, the book offers the first full-length exploration of modern British nature writing, from the late eighteenth century to the present. Focusing on non-fictional prose writing, it supplies new readings of classic texts by Romantic, Victorian and Contemporary authors, situating these within the context of an enduringly popular genre. Nature writing is still widely considered fundamentally celebratory or escapist, yet it is also very much in tune with the conflicts of a natural world under threat. The book's five authors connect these conflicts to the triple historical crisis of the environment; of representation; and of modern dissociated sensibility.

Conrad's Decentered Fiction

Dr Johan Adam Warodell's Conrad's Decentered Fiction (Cambridge University Press) is a richly illustrated book argues that Conrad's vibrant details set him apart as a writer and brings them from the margins to the centre for study. With recently discovered primary sources - including drawings and maps in Conrad's own hand - this book travels widely across Conrad's fiction and explores its interest in marginal voices, characters and details. It produces a new picture of Conrad as a writer, and the first picture of Conrad as an amateur sketch artist. Introducing new critical vocabulary and applying new names from art history to Conrad studies, the book ranges across cartography, fashion, analytic philosophy, manuscript studies, and animal studies to discover Conrad as an artist operating across and between different media. Offered as a complement to the abstract approaches of much literary theory, this detail-driven and margin-focused monograph mirrors the characteristic granular nature of Conrad's fiction. 

The House of Dudley

The House of Dudley (Michael Joseph, Penguin by Dr Joanne Paul was published in March 2022. In the book, Joanne describes how, in a power struggle with the Tudors, the fiercely ambitious Dudley family came close to ruling England in the 16th century. 

The BBC: A People's History

The BBC: A People’s History by Prof David Hendy was published in January 2022 by Profile Books Ltd. Based on unique access to the BBC’s rich and comprehensive archives, it is the only BBC-authorised centenary history book and traces the BBC from its maverick beginnings through war, the creation of television, changing public tastes, austerity, and massive cultural change. 
The BBC has constantly evolved, developing from one radio station, to television, then multiple channels and now the competition with the internet and streaming services. The BBC: A People’s History is a history of a now global institution that defines Britain and created modern broadcasting; it is also a reflection of 100 years of British history. 
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Women's International Thought: A New History

Women’s International Thought: A New History (Cambridge University Press), co-edited by Dr Katharina Rietzler, was published in January 2022. This is the first major publication resulting from the Leverhulme Research Project between the University of Sussex and the University of Oxford, for which Katharina has been the co-investigator. 
This is an edited volume comprising the first cross-disciplinary history of women’s international thought, recovering and analysing the path-breaking work of eighteen leading thinkers of international politics from the early to mid-twentieth century. 

Music for the South Downs

Cover for Ed Hughes CDReleased in June 2022 by Metier Records, this disc is the fourth in a series of portrait recordings focused on music by Ed Hughes. It is built around the themes of present-day contemplation of landscape, the pleasures of open air walking, and how responses to landscape can be affected by art, and vice versa.

The disc includes Nonet, commissioned by the South Downs National Park Authority in 2020 for its tenth anniversary, to accompany a silent film celebrating the South Downs by contemporary filmmaker Sam Moore. And The Woods So Wild, a composition for piano quartet exploring the consolations of landscape and woods through the surviving fragment of a haunting Tudor melody, which in Hughes's composition sings through cross-rhythms and weaving polyphony.

The composer Judith Weir CBE writes, 'all the works in this rich collection...surge forward with textural warmth and harmonic continuity. This is music for walkers, and people who love the earth'.

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