A Taste for the Negative: Beckett and Nihilism
Shane Weller
Legenda (General Series) 4 February 2005

Authorial Echoes: Textuality and Self-Plagiarism in the Narrative of Luigi Pirandello
Catherine O'Rawe
Legenda (General Series) 4 February 2005

  • ‘A short review cannot do justice to this arresting critical work. A combination of bold ideas with a meticulous attention to detail and a broad theoretical foundation characterizes O'Rawe's critical approach. Insights are always well substantiated with abundant evidence... Both a major contribution to Pirandello scholarship and a seminal challenge to narrative criticism.’ — Jennifer Lorch, Modern Language Review 103.4, October 2008, 1140-41 (full text online)

Crossing Fields in Modern Spanish Culture
Edited by Federico Bonaddio and Xon de Ros
Legenda (General Series) 1 December 2003

  • ‘Federico Bonaddio and Xon de Ros have put together a very useful series of short and punchy articles which span over a hundred and fifty years of Spanish culture, from the 1860s to the present day... Without doubt this collection would make an excellent addition to any university library. The essays on canonical texts may very well prove invaluable to undergraduate students while those on lesser-known writers, artists, and cinematographers will surely fulfil the same function for postgraduates and the academic community in general.’ — Jean Andrews, Modern Language Review 101.3, July 2006, 876-77 (full text online)

Culture, Censorship and the State in Twentieth-Century Italy
Edited by Guido Bonsaver and Robert Gordon
Legenda (General Series) 13 September 2005

Goethe and Patriarchy: Faust and the Fates of Desire
James Simpson
Legenda (General Series) 2 January 1999

  • notice, Germanistik 41.3-4, 2000, 921
  • ‘Simpson argues that Goethe's work, in essence, constitutes an act of self-diagnosis and therapy... his paradigm is not just Freudian, but also implicitly Jungian.’ — Paul Bishop, Modern Language Review 96.2, 2001, 566-7 (full text online)
  • ‘This book is not brilliant: it is too carefully argued and clearly written to deserve that flashy label of the day. A more apt descriptor might be formidable, both for its ambition and for its achievement. Simpson has undertaken nothing less than the elucidation of the paradigm that was central to all of Goethe's intellectual, personal, scientific and poetic concerns, the "ur-fantasy that is a fantasy of origins"... In the best tradition of British literary criticism, Simpson writes in a lively, engaging style that does not need jargon... No one working seriously on Goethe or on Faust can ignore the challenge of this study.’ — Arnd Bohm, Seminar 41.1, 2005, 73-74

Medea in Performance 1500-2000
Edited by Edith Hall, Fiona Macintosh and Oliver Taplin
Legenda (General Series) 1 December 2000

  • ‘It provides crucial insights into the constantly shifting parameters of performance... Medea in Performance analyses each stage of [Medea's] metamorphosis in theatre, opera and film, and, in a wonderful essay by Margaret Reynolds, makes the important point that the static iconography of Medea is often as dramatically charged as her stage incarnation. The result is an entertaining and informed work.’ — Jane Montgomery, Times Literary Supplement 23 March, 2001, 20
  • ‘Sophisticated and elegantly argued treatments... Fills in many gaps in the performance history. Smethurst brings to her stunning close reading of Yukio Ninagawa's internationally acclaimed performance a scholarly knowledge of both Greek and traditional Japanese drama.’ — Helene P. Foley, Bryn Mawr Classical Review 27 April, 2001
  • ‘While the book's scope is enormous, its overall design had clearly been thought through with care, the result being that one comes away from it with a real sense of having thoroughly reviewed the subject... a highly valuable contribution to the literature on performance.’ — Richard H. Armstrong, American Journal of Philology 123.2, 2002, 289-93
  • ‘This is an important collection, not only as a document in the history of scholarship but also because it touches on themes which demand further exploration.’ — Lorna Hardwick, Classical Review 52, 2002, 357-9
  • ‘Makes a strong contribution to cultural studies... Always admirable.’ — Graham Ley, Prudentia XXXIV.2, 2002, 249-51
  • ‘Absolutely outstanding chapters by Hall and Macintosh approach performance history as a complex series of interrelations between theatrical practice and audience expectations, literary trends and contemporary debates.’ — Astrid Voigt, Journal of Hellenic Studies 123, 2003, 263-5

Pinter and the Object of Desire: An Approach through the Screenplays
Linda Renton
Legenda (General Series) 1 May 2002

  • ‘Linda Renton's superb study of Pinter as screenwriter quotes him saying how natural the process seemed when he started to write for films in the early 1960s... A strong commitment to the power of the image runs through his screen work, however paradoxical this might seem in a writer famed for his sparring dialogue. Renton argues that the image was central to his approach to film, suggesting that there is an "an object of desire" at the heart of all Pinter's screenplays: one which is often barely visible - or even invisible - to the characters in the story.’ — Ian Christie, Sight & Sound June 2009, 33

Women in Italian Renaissance Culture and Society
Edited by Letizia Panizza
Legenda (General Series) 1 July 2000

  • ‘In her introduction Letizia Panizza writes that one of the aims of the collection is to recover neglected areas of Italian culture and society, which she has done... Many of the essays are quite good; all are informative.’ — Elissa B. Weaver, Renaissance Quarterly 2002, 713-15
  • ‘Offers a vast and well-organized view of the position that early modern women occupied in Italy from 1400 to 1650... I highly recommend the collection.’ — Rinaldini Russell, Forum Italicum 36.1, 2002, 214-15
  • ‘The above is merely a fraction of the content. There is certainly richness in this volume. Many branches of scholarship gain by having these articles in print and they are an eloquent testimony to the vitality of scholarship in this area.’ — Olwen Hufton, Modern Language Review 97.1, 2002 (full text online)
  • ‘This excellent book of essays... retains the liveliness and originality of the conference held at Royal Holloway, University of London, ... with the added bonus that all those given in Italian have been translated, so that - as the editor says - we can benefit from the work of many specialists, some of whose work has not previously been available in English.’ — Alison Brown, Italian Studies LVII, 2002, 171-2
  • ‘Without doubt, the most important volume yet published in English on the specific contribution of women to culture and society in Italy in the Renaissance... The coherence of the volume is assured by a number of overarching themes.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies XXXIX, 2003, 480

The Burgtheater and Austrian Identity: Theatre and Cultural Politics in Vienna, 1918-38
Robert Pyrah
Legenda (General Series) 5 July 2007

  • ‘This excellent volume provides an invaluable extra dimension to previous publications on Austrian theatre between the wars through the rigorous use of archival material, reinforcing and enhancingwork based mainly on texts, reports, and reviews in the Viennese press and journals. This is a work which will be important not only to literary historians, particularly of the theatre, but also to political historians, demonstrating as it does how the history of that troubled period in Austria directly affected the theatre.’ — John Warren, Modern Language Review 103.4, October 2008, 1164-65 (full text online)
  • ‘A significant and welcome contribution to the slowly expanding body of work examining the interface of culture and politics in the First Austrian Republic... Original and well-researched.’Forum for Modern Language Studies 231)

Thinking with Shakespeare: Comparative and Interdisciplinary Essays
Edited by William Poole and Richard Scholar
Legenda (General Series) 23 February 2007

  • ‘In his witty, deeply learned and humane "Last Word", Nuttall reminds us that the famous principle of economy in explanation, Ockham's Razor, when applied to Shakespeare's plays, should be renamed "Ockham's Beard", which prompts us to ask of any of Shakespeare's plays, "What else is going on?"... What makes this collection distinctive is that nearly all of these essays focus centrally on genre.’ — Paul Cefalu, Shakespeare Quarterly 59.3, Fall 2008, 345-48
  • ‘Frank Kermode once referred to Nuttall (who died in 2007) as "probably the most philosophically-minded of modern literary critics", and the volume reflects this emphasis... A stimulating collection of pieces, of relevance not just to Shakespeareans but also to anyone with an interest in questions of the nature of literary value.’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 118-19

Aristophanes in Performance 421 BC-AD 2007: Peace, Birds, and Frogs
Edited by Edith Hall and Amanda Wrigley
Legenda (General Series) 24 August 2007

  • ‘This volume, produced under the auspices of the Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama, contains an all-encompassing performance history of three plays of Aristophanes' Old Comedy from their first performance to the present day. Aristophanic comedy, despite its highly politicized, sexual, and time-bound humour, is shown to be the touchstone of comedy, influential from the Renaissance onwards.’ — Regine May, Modern Language Review 103.3, July 2008, 807-08 (full text online)
  • ‘This exceptionally handsome and well-produced volume... Its scope, as its title indicates, is very broad, and most of its readers are likely to be selective in the use they make of it. Roughly half of the essays discuss twentieth-century productions of Aristophanes’ plays and there is, inevitably, an emphasis upon the problems involved in translation in both the narrower (linguistic) and the broader (theatrical/cultural) senses of the term.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 45.3 (2009), 351-54
  • ‘There are dozens of plates in this volume, and the visual record of the performances described can be of great interpretative value for the reader. There is a healthy range in the scale of these performances: university productions or small-scale professional (or semi-professional) shows stand alongside much better funded and larger scale endeavours. This is, I feel, essential.’ — C. W. Marshall, Phoenix LXIV.1-2, 2010, 172-75

Identity and Transformation in the Plays of Alexis Piron
Derek Connon
Legenda (General Series) 23 February 2007

  • ‘What emerges from Connon’s analyses is the sheer vitality of Piron’s production, its sometimes "anarchic" inventiveness, and its propensity to question hierarchies and cross boundaries of genre... I recommend this book highly.’ — Mark Darlow, Modern Language Review 103.3, July 2008, 855-56 (full text online)
  • ‘This is a particularly good-looking book, with attractive hardcover, smart format, quality white paper and lovely typesetting. It boasts the kind of finish that just makes reading particularly pleasant, and all the more so when its content inspires one to return to a relatively forgotten playwright who clearly deserves more attention than his Villon-like epitaph irreverently suggests: ‘Ci-gît Piron, qui ne fut rien,/Pas même académicien’.’ — Síofra Pierse, French Studies 477-78

Unbinding Medea: Interdisciplinary Approaches to a Classical Myth from Antiquity to the 21st Century
Edited by Heike Bartel and Anne Simon
Legenda (General Series) 6 September 2010

  • ‘This handsome volume, with generous illustrations, bibliography, and index... Medea has become a cutting-edge subject in the past dozen years. Certain insistent concerns, however, such as those of feminism, do set this latest collection apart from the others. At the highest level, Phillips's essay provides a wider philosophical perspective in what could be a suitable conclusion for this whole book. Its claim that Medea's story is in part a lawyer's story "of the taming of instinct and impulse and their ultimate subjection to the Law" calls to mind the restless inquiring after justice in The Oresteia and so many other Greek tragedies.’ — Richard F. Hardin, Bryn Mawr Classical Review 22 February 2011
  • ‘This collection deserves to be required reading for all those interested in the relationship between ancient and modern, and the role of mythology in the process of defining reality.’ — E. M. Griffiths, Modern Language Review 107.2, April 2012, 588-89 (full text online)

Force from Nietzsche to Derrida
Clare Connors
Legenda (General Series) 23 April 2010

Reading Literature in Portuguese: Commentaries in Honour of Tom Earle
Cláudia Pazos Alonso and Stephen Parkinson
Legenda (General Series) 25 September 2013

Selected Essays of Malcolm Bowie II: Song Man
Malcolm Bowie
Legenda (General Series) vol 2 of 24 December 2013

  • ‘Only someone with Bowie’s exquisite powers of expression and formidably focused, well-stocked mind could home in so closely on the multilevelled play of thought in some of the most difficult modern writers, and especially on the places where their work crosses aesthetic boundaries... It is therefore a huge treat to be able to revel in the publication of his Selected Essays, impeccably edited by Alison Finch and beautifully produced by Legenda... Even in the space of a short review, Bowie’s writing offers both pleasure and intense mental stimulation. For readers old and new, there are marvels in store in these two magnificent volumes.’ — Michael Sheringham, French Studies 68.3, July 2014, 422-23
  • ‘These two volumes can only add to our sense of [Bowie's] importance... Criticism like this is clearly so much more than criticism: it is an engagement with the act of creation that is brought back to creation itself. These two volumes are full of brilliance and insight and deftly communicated and thus infectious pleasure.’ — Patrick McGuinness, Times Literary Supplement 5805, 4 July 2014, 21
  • ‘Bowie’s style appeals both to generalist and specialist readers; his clarity makes it possible for all to follow the argument even in his more technical writings, while the sharpness of his insights make his pieces for general audiences appealing to specialists as well. His writing always strikes a balance between sophistication and accessibility, often with a dose of wit (see especially his delightful self-review of Proust Among the Stars [II: 203-6]), allowing us to travel with him through our own areas of expertise and amateur interest.’ — Joseph Acquisto, Nineteenth-Century French Studies 43.1-2, 2014
  • ‘How Verdi moves Shakespeare’s Othello around the globe, finding the mental ‘fingerprint’ in Winnicott, introducing Judith Butler, deciphering Stéphane Mallarmé, exploring brevity in Proust (yes), Liszt’s relationship with Wagner, ‘that most exhausting of sons-in-law’: these are just a few of the subjects considered with such zest by Malcolm Bowie, who was a critic of immense talent.’ — Edward Hughes, Times Higher Education Supplement 1 January 2015, 63
  • ‘Evidence abounds in these pieces of Bowie’s keen appetite for intrinsically difficult subject-matter. Indeed, his ability to sustain his critical nerve in the handling of complex material was to become a hallmark of his achievement... Yet alongside this intensity of engagement with serious subject-matter, we also see the poise and panache of a critic who was so evidently at home with textual composition.’ — Edward J. Hughes, Modern Language Review 111.1, January 2016, 228-29 (full text online)

The Reinvention of Theatre in Sixteenth-Century Europe: Traditions, Texts and Performance
Edited by T. F. Earle and Catarina Fouto
Legenda (General Series) 8 June 2015

  • ‘Sem dúvida, uma perspectiva rica e bastante abrangente do fenómeno teatral na Europa do séc. XVI.’ — Manuel José De Sousa Barbosa, Euphrosyne 45, 2017, 658-60

Maud Beerbohm Tree: Lady of the Stage
Susana Cory-Wright
Legenda (General Series) 26 February 2018

  • ‘This is a beautifully presented work, with an attractive cover and illustrations... There is much emphasis upon the personal life and career of Maud, but the book is also good on the sociopolitical changes taking place in the theatre at this time, and on the role of women in society.’ — unsigned notice, The Year's Work in English Studies 98.1, 2019, 657-58

Gravity and Grace: Essays for Roger Pearson
Edited by Charlie Louth and Patrick McGuinness
Legenda (General Series) 25 February 2019

  • ‘A core series of contributions offers a remarkably sustained and rich reflection on the interplay between the aesthetic and ethical notions of gravity and grace.’ — Scott M. Powers, H-France 20, June 2020, no. 92
  • ‘Works of art function by allowing something to happen, rather than by making something happen, and are nothing without our active participation. The prescriptive weightiness of words in practical discourse is not what poetry, especially, puts in play. That certainly makes this book a fitting tribute to the wonderful work of Roger Pearson, whose own writing is never heavy, never pedantic, but always invites and inspires the reader to continue thinking beyond the page.’ — Peter Dayan, Modern Language Review 116.1, 2020, 188-89 (full text online)