Published May 1998

Processes of Literary Creation: Flaubert and Proust
Marion Schmid
Legenda (General Series)

  • ‘This is an excellent, scholarly analysis with insights both for the specialist and the non-genetic scholar.’ — notice, The Year's Work in Modern Language Studies 60, 1998, 164
  • ‘A penetrating and valuable contribution to genetic scholarship.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 37.1, 2001, 110-11
  • ‘Represents a formidable amount of research... a very substantial and fruitful study on all counts.’ — Nola M. Leov, New Zealand Journal of French Studies 22.1, 2001, 29
  • ‘A painstaking and perceptive account... Schmid defends genetic criticism against Bourdieu's charge that it marks a return to the positivism of traditional literary historiography. Her own application of genetic theories of composition is measured and nuanced, and throws up many insights.’ — Edward J. Hughes, Modern Language Review 95.3, 2000, 843-4 (full text online)
  • ‘Intriguingly, Proust had placed medical prescriptions centre-stage in one of the drafts for the opening line of the novel... Nuggets such as this feature in Schmids study, in which she meticulously explains genetic criticism, before uncovering two contrasting compositional styles.’ — Edward Hughes, Times Literary Supplement 21 May, 1999, 8
  • ‘As well as containing detailed analysis of two radically opposed writing practices, the work is especially valuable in setting out the main issues in genetic studies.’ — Larry Duffy, French Studies LIV.2, 2000, 233-4
  • ‘Schmid's analysis sheds new light on the organizational intricacies of these canonical texts, which may encourage even scholars of Flaubert and Proust to reread, in hopes of appreciating the subtle patterns she uncovers.’ — Hollie Markland Harder, French Review 77.5, April 2004, 990-1

Published July 2008

Exotic Subversions in Nineteenth-Century French Fiction
Jennifer Yee
Research Monographs in French Studies 25

  • ‘An elegant and thoroughly researched monograph... a valuable reference for future work on exoticism, imperialism and postcolonial France.’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 120
  • ‘A highly effective demonstration of the use of postcolonial perspectives to open up new possibilities for our reading of the nineteenth century.’ — Timothy Unwin, Modern Language Review 105.2, 2010, 561-62 (full text online)
  • ‘Yee’s text, stranded between the dogmatic (un)certainties of “1991” and the questions that have opened up in its ongoing aftermath, provides a salutary, if unintended, reminder of what it is that we, as postcolonial critics, have been invested in, and of what is at stake in our ongoing attempts at justifying this investment (the “aesthetic turn”) or contesting it (the “political turn”). Were the praise-songs of “oppositionality,” which once (à la Lowe, Chambers, Scott) dominated our field, simply the epiphenomena of a strategy of containment through which postcolonial studies was bound to a certain vision of “complexity” at odds with the anti-colonial, and unrepentantly non-literary, dynamics of a work like Orientalism, so that its truly radical (and, first and foremost, anti-Zionist) politics could be rendered palatable to an Anglo-American academic audience ever in search of a specious newness but intent on preserving the old, bourgeois order upon which literary studies, and the affect that so intimately at’ — Chris Bongie, Francophone Postcolonial Studies 7.2, 2010, 89-94
  • ‘Bongie's review is alarmingly accurate. I do indeed accept 'literature as [my] chosen and delimited field of study' (though I try to see that field as part of a broader history). And he is entirely accurate in saying that I see the subversions offered by nineteenth-century literature as largely falling short of 'true resistance'... Of course the literature of the nineteenth century is racist according to our modern definitions; but racism is so vast and insidious a phenomenon that it is not in itself analytically useful and requires careful historical nuancing. In any case, although I am most interested in an approach that combines aesthetic and political concerns, and would regret such a rigid separation as Bongie appears to think necessary, I also differ from him in my belief in a supple and many-voiced criticism that does not need to dictate one single mode of textual analysis.’ — Jennifer Yee's invited reply to Chris Bongie's FPS review, Bulletin of Francophone Postcolonial Studies 1.1, Spring 2010, 15-17
  • ‘In this elegant, lucid, and original study of four ‘exotic’ works by Chateaubriand, Hugo, Flaubert, and Segalen, Jennifer Yee turns her back on Edward Said's negative depiction of nineteenth-century Orientalism in order to read her chosen texts from a post-colonialist perspective... Impressive and admirably comparative.’ — Michael Tilby, French Studies 64.4, 2010, 495-96

Published September 2017

Intimacy and Distance: Conflicting Cultures in Nineteenth-Century France
Philippa Lewis
Legenda (General Series)

  • ‘L’ouvrage ne se contente pas d’explorer les productions littéraires de l’intime (du roman intime au récit de voyage) mais s’appuie sur une belle et riche variété de formes littéraires et culturelles (journaux intimes, portraits littéraires, critique d’art) pour mettre en évidence la hiérarchie des valeurs à l’œuvre dans la notion d’intime.’ — Françoise Grauby, French Studies 72.3, July 2018, 459
  • ‘Philippa Lewis’s fresh, thoughtful overview of the virtual relationships between French authors and readers between 1830 and 1870 focuses on selected works by Jules Barbey d’Aurevilly, Charles Baudelaire, Gustave Flaubert, Eugène Fromentin, Maurice de Guérin, and C.-A. Sainte-Beuve... She effectively synthesizes the deconstructive distinguo move of deconstruction—dissecting specious identities—with a discreet historical consciousness that alternatively discloses new ranges of possibilities and then contracts into a synthesis. Brief, thoughtful footnotes extend Lewis’s discussions in many directions, revealing her exemplary deep background.’ — Laurence M. Porter, Nineteenth-Century French Studies 47.1-2, Fall 2018
  • ‘In this thoughtful and suggestive monograph, Philippa Lewis offers a carefully historicized, thoroughly researched, and beautifully written account of the place occupied by the concept of intimacy in the literary culture of nineteenth-century France, and especially its middle decades... The book’s true point, and its greatest merit, is to get under the skin—intus, et in cute—of nineteenth-century French letters; to reanimate with a careful balance of sympathy and erudition a somewhat forgotten yet profoundly influential moment in the history of literary thought. In this respect, the book will be of compelling interest to all scholars of nineteenth-century France.’ — Andrew J. Counter, Modern Language Review 114.1, January 2019, 146-47 (full text online)
  • ‘Accompagnato da una bibliogra a veramente ricca e da un dettagliato indice dei nomi, il saggio di Philippa Lewis si occupa nella prima parte dell’Intimacy, prendendo come punto di partenza un saggio di Henry James su Sainte-Beuve, in cui l’autore mostra il carattere “intimo” della scrittura come una caratteristica di una importante zona della letteratura francese del xix secolo: «poésie intime, the roman intime, and the journal intime».’ — Maria Emanuela Raffi, Studi francesi 186, 20, 2019, 516-17
  • ‘Lewis’s convincing argument revolves around the idea that male authors writing after 1830, including both well- and lesser-known writers such as Flaubert, Euge`ne Fromentin, and above all Baudelaire, employed certain textual strategies as a result of their ambivalent feelings towards intimacy... This study constitutes a very significant addition to the existing corpus of works on the cultural and literary history of intimacy.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 55.1, January 2019, 119
  • ‘A very well-researched and engaging contribution to the literary history of nineteenth-century France, the social and cultural history of emotions, Baudelaire studies, and historical masculinity studies. By deprivileging distance as the primary spatial and affective metaphor for understanding post-revolutionary French society and restoring intimacy to its rightful place on the cultural and literary landscape, Lewis successfully complicates one of the foundational paradigms of nineteenth-century French studies, making her book a compelling read for all scholars in the field.’ — Jessica Tanner, H-France 19, February 2019, no. 27
  • ‘This book is written with admirable clarity and, via the lens of intimacy, offers original perspectives on some well-known and lesser-known writers, while also shedding light on the emotional history of the nineteenth century.’ — Paul Gibbard, Emotions: History, Culture, Society 3, 2019, 174-75