Adrian Stokes: An Architectonic Eye
Stephen Kite
Legenda (General Series) 23 December 2008

  • ‘This marvelous book, which is focused on Stokes's writings on the Renaissance, provides a full and highly original account of the writer's development. Clearly written and well illustrated, it tells the story accurately... All future readers of Stokes will be indebted to Kite's tactful and comprehensive commentary.’ — David Carrier, caa.reviews 4 February 2009
  • ‘Admirably clear in providing the first account of the architectural basis of Stokes’ journey toward beauty from the ugliness of Edwardian London as he remembered it after the First World War.’ — Janet Sayers, American Imago 68.3, 2011, 561–67

After Bataille: Sacrifice, Exposure, Community
Patrick ffrench
Legenda (General Series) 24 August 2007

  • ‘In pursuing Bataille’s legacy ffrench seeks not simply to see where it has got to but makes an invaluable contribution to it.’ — Patrick Crowley, Modern Language Review 105.1, January 2010, 254-55 (full text online)
  • ‘Patrick ffrench’s outstanding study provides multiple, meticulously drawn contexts in which Bataille’s writing and thought emerge in a new light, in terms both of their own development over some three decades and of their relation to other, key intellectual trajectories before, during and after that period... essential reading not only for those interested in Bataille but also for anyone concerned with the intellectual and literary history of twentieth-century France.’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 112-13

After Reception Theory: Fedor Dostoevskii in Britain, 1869-1935
Lucia Aiello
Legenda (General Series) 25 September 2013

  • ‘This new study complements a number of existing accounts of Dostoevsky reception in Britain and adds to our understanding of Anglo-Russian cul- tural exchange more generally. It also explores the current state of reception studies in the literary humanities (which it views rather pessimistically), creatively blurring the distinction between ques- tions of individual aesthetic reaction (‘reader response’) and patterns of transmission and cultural exchange.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 51.1, January 2015, 87
  • ‘This book calls attention to the complexity of reception and literary criticism, analyzes temporal and geographic context, and stresses the importance and nuances of the cultural context in which a work and its criticism arise. Aiello's study re-evaluates a familiar theoretical framework, providing a new perspective for scholars in the field.’ — Megan Luttrell, Slavic and East European Journal 58.4, Winter 2014, 722-24
  • ‘Fedor Dostoevskii once wrote in a letter to his brother, ‘Man is a mystery. It needs to be unravelled.’ Lucia Aiello’s new monograph traces the broad scope of social, psychological, and, most frequently, biographical criticism in Britain that has sought to unravel the mysteries of his major works.’ — Patrick Jeffery, Modern Language Review 111.2, April 2016, 600-601 (full text online)

Algernon Swinburne and Walter Pater: Victorian Aestheticism, Doubt and Secularisation
Sara Lyons
Legenda (General Series) 1 July 2015

  • ‘As British aestheticism continues to enjoy a revival of interest, it becomes ever more urgent to reassess the metaphysical work that Pater and Swinburne have done for us in their search for a way beyond doubt. Algernon Swinburne and Walter Pater is a timely reminder of our intellectual inheritance from this moment of crisis in Western religion.’ — Orla Polten, Essays in Criticism 66.3, July 2016, 390-96
  • ‘Sara Lyons’s admirable monograph will prove a cornerstone in Victorian studies and will soon become invaluable to students and scholars alike working on 19th-century literature and culture.’ — Charlotte Ribeyrol, Cahiers victoriens et édouardiens 83, Printemps 2016
  • ‘Lyons’s rethinking of Swinburne’s and Pater’s relationship to religion is absolutely necessary in light of recent revisions of the secularization thesis. She productively complicates the oversimplified binary between belief and unbelief that still too often plagues our readings of Victorian literature, and provocatively asks us to rethink the reasons underlying the Aesthetic Movement’s embrace of an ‘art for art’s sake’ philosophy. Algernon Swinburne and Walter Pater should be read by scholars of aestheticism, nine- teenth-century religion, and Victorian literature more generally.’ — Dustin Friedman, Review of English Studies Advance Access 4 October 2016
  • ‘A valuable addition to scholarship on Swinburne, Pater and aestheticism.’ — Beth Newman, Victorian Studies 60.1, Autumn 2017, 126-28

Aloysius Bertrand's Gaspard de la Nuit: Beyond the Prose Poem
Valentina Gosetti
Legenda (General Series) 1 September 2016

  • ‘It is Baudelaire that dubs [Bertrand] the pioneer of the prose-poem and out of this well-meaning act springs the genie of subsequent critical depreciation. Gosetti’s absorbing and hugely valuable historical recontextualization of Bertrand gives us just the tools we need to do Gaspard altogether better justice.’ — Clive Scott, Journal of European Studies 47.1, 2017, 82-83
  • ‘In her informative and thoroughly researched monograph, Valentina Gosetti contends that developing a fuller understanding of Bertrand’s Gaspard de la Nuit is contingent upon a wider appreciation of the historical, social, cultural, and literary contexts in which the collection was produced... This study, which includes an appendix containing four beautiful English translations by Gian Lombardo, is a valuable contribution to the scholarship on Bertrand in the Anglophone world. It will be of great interest to historians and literary scholars of French Romanticism.’ — Catherine Witt, H-France 17, 2017
  • ‘In clear and eloquent prose, Gosetti presents a lively and thoroughly interesting account of Gaspard that illuminates a creative experimental work deserving of its proper spot in the canon of French Romantic literature... Gosetti convinces the reader many times over that Gaspard de la Nuit is an audacious nexus of literary and artistic motifs that emerge once the portrait of the artist is allowed to share the Romantic limelight.’ — Karen F. Quandt, Nineteenth-Century French Studies 46.1-2, 2017
  • ‘This elegant and beautifully written monograph seeks to offer new insights into Gaspard de la nuit, by returning to the literary and cultural context in which it was written, and approaching it on its own terms... Gosetti’s book richly deserves to achieve its aim of encouraging readers to pick up Bertrand, but it also offers an enormously rewarding read for anyone interested more generally in prose poetry, provincial literature, and the role of the fantastic in nineteenth-century France.’ — Fiona Cox, French Studies 71.4, October 2017, 585-86 (full text online)
  • ‘«Fascinating work» que ce Gaspard de la Nuit, écrit-elle dans les dernières lignes de sa conclusion: le lecteur en est toujours plus convaincu après avoir lu ce brillant essai.’ — Christine Marcandier, Revue Bertrand No. 1, 2018, 256-59

Anglo-German Interactions in the Literature of the 1890s
Patrick Bridgwater
Legenda (General Series) 1 August 1999

  • ‘The author is to be congratulated for shedding new light on a wide range of Anglo-German cross-currents... His study weaves a multi-faceted web of historical and inter-personal connections, and is at its best when it forges links between the approaches of different authors and diverse forms of art.’ — Susanne Stark, Modern Language Review 97.2, 2002, 523-4 (full text online)
  • ‘This well-documented volume provides new insights into the key social and cultural issues of the 1890s, including the truth and morality of artistic writing.’ — Crocker and Womack, The Year's Work in English Studies 2000, 532

The Artificial Self: The Psychology of Hippolyte Taine
Hilary Nias
Legenda (General Series) 1 October 1999

  • ‘Given the relative dearth of serious work on the writers who formed the philosophical backbone to nineteenth-century literary France, a study of any one of them is welcome, a study of this quality of scholarship, insight and precision a real feast.’ — David C. J. Lee, Modern Language Review 96.3, 2001, 830-1 (full text online)
  • ‘This authoritative study of Taine's indirectness and inconclusiveness will be an indispensable foundation.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 37.3, 2001, 347
  • ‘A probing and stimulating contribution to Tainian studies.’ — Thomas H. Goetz, Nineteenth-Century French Studies 29.3-4, 2001, 370-1

Assuming the Light: The Parisian Literary Apprenticeship of Miguel Angel Asturias
Stephen Henighan
Legenda (General Series) 1 December 1999

  • ‘The combination of close textual analysis of Asturias's own work, both fictional and journalistic, with that of other discourses, including the work of his contemporaries as well as his critics, is, in my view, one of the many strengths of Assuming the Light. Frequently provocative and meticulously researched, this book will be of interest therefore not only to Asturias specialists but also more generally to scholars engaged in Latin American cultural studies, particularly those interested in questions of cultural identity.’ — Claire Lindsay, Modern Language Review 97.3, 2002, 742-3 (full text online)
  • ‘Lucid, sophisticated, beautifully written, it provides a valuable and thought-provoking introduction to the writer's extraordinary sojourn in Paris... Stephen Henighan seems destined to make an outstanding contribution to Asturias studies.’ — Gerald Martin, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies 79, 2002
  • ‘Valuable, problematic insights for those conversant with Asturias's work and its criticism.’ — Paul Jordan, Bulletin of Spanish Studies LXXIX, 2002, 826-8

The Backward Look: Memory and the Writing Self in France 1580-1920
Angelica Goodden
Legenda (General Series) 1 July 2000

  • ‘Reads like an essay by Montaigne... an ambitious and thought-provoking study.’ — Michéle Bissiére, French Review 76.3, 2003, 592-3
  • ‘It is salutary to read a thoughtful, level-headed and well-informed account of the representation of the self in French writing... there is no doubting the depth, range and persuasiveness of the thesis advanced.’ — Anthony Strugnell, French Studies LVII.3, 2003, 428-30

Bakhtin between East and West: Cross-Cultural Transmission
Karine Zbinden
Legenda (General Series) 7 December 2006

  • ‘Zbinden exhibits considerable theoretical insight and a capacity for nuanced analysis throughout the work.’ — R. Coates, Slavonic and East European Review 87.2, 2009, 344-46 (full text online)
  • ‘Exceptional new work being produced on the Russian polymath, some of the most interesting of which was coming out of the University of Sheffield, whose Bakhtin Centre supports the work of an outstanding group of language theorists... Karine Zbinden and Alastair Renfrew are two of the excellent younger scholars from the Bakhtin Centre.’ — Michael Bernard-Donals, Slavic Review 68.1, Spring 2009, 193-95

Baudelaire: Individualism, Dandyism and the Philosophy of History
Bernard Howells
Legenda (General Series) 1 June 1996

  • ‘This is Baudelaire as iceberg, in Claude Pichois's term, the writer whose reading lurks like a huge submerged mass... Baudelaireans will be pleased to have these essays in so convenient a form, and graduate students focusing on the nineteenth century will find them both challenging and informing.’ — Rosemary Lloyd, Nineteenth-Century French Studies 30.3-4, 2002, 417-19
  • ‘Le lecteur estimera surtout dans l'oeurage de Howells la richesse et la subtilité de parallèles, surtout avec Emerson et Carlyle, fondés sur des relations de fait et la mise en situation et en perspective de textes de Baudelaire qu'une critique fran°aise parfois étroitement nationale a pu appréhender de manière trop isolée.’ — Claude de Grève, Revue de littérature comparée 3, 1997, 391-3
  • ‘The great advantage of Howells's unflappable approach to Baudelaire's flower-pot philosophising is its corrosive effect on commonplaces of Baudelaire criticism... A valuable contribution to the art of defining a poet's philosophy.’ — Graham Robb, Times Literary Supplement 24 January, 1997
  • ‘Howells has undertaken an admirable close re-reading of Baudelaire's work by paying attention to its allusive intellectual density and to the contexts into which it should be placed.’ — Dudley M. Marchi, Comparatist 22, 1998, 208-9

Biographies and Autobiographies in Modern Italy
Edited by Martin McLaughlin and Peter Hainsworth
Legenda (General Series) 23 February 2007

  • ‘Hainsworth and McLaughlin open the volume with a succinct, clear and meaty disquisition on the nature of biography and autobiography. Their Introduction furnishes, in lively prose, an overview of the state of such writing in Italy... A fascinating glimpse into the life histories, and the shaping of life histories, by an eclectic group of Italians. Its chapters provide useful information on the less-known and engrossing new insights into familiar canonical figures.’ — Risa Sodi, Biography 32.3, Summer 2009, pp. 562-65
  • ‘These pieces all share John Woodhouse's sentiment that the life lived and written by an author are "mutually illuminating" and that writing loses much when "seen solely within the terms of a textual universe".’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 107-08

Britain and Italy from Romanticism to Modernism: A Festschrift for Peter Brand
Edited by Martin McLaughlin
Legenda (General Series) 1 November 2000

  • ‘The book concludes with a useful bibliography of Peter Brand's work and offers a valuable résumé of work in the field since Brand's pioneering study.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies xxxix/1, 2003, 91
  • ‘This rich and varied collection of essays... a worthy homage to Peter Brand.’ — Carmine G. di Biase, Italica 79.4, 2002, 568-72
  • ‘A volume that, with its interlacing strands, very effectively offers a picture of the complex relationship between two cultures reciprocally illuminating each other in often unpredictable ways.’ — Laura Lepschy, Modern Language Review 98.2, 2003, 482-3 (full text online)
  • ‘Une présentation très claire, dans laquelle toutefois le titre peut paraïtre trompeur, car il resterait à explorer, pendant cette même période, ce qu'apporte précisément cet autre aspect de la culture moderne italienne qu'est par exemple sa production romanesque. On songe à Manzoni (1785-1873) dont l'èuvre reflète à bien des égards le passage du Romantisme au Modernisme.’ — Annie Dubernard Laurent, Revue de littérature comparée 3, 2002, 381-3

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)

The Cervantean Heritage: Reception and Influence of Cervantes in Britain
Edited by J. A. G. Ardila
Legenda (General Series) 23 December 2008

  • ‘Resulta reconfortante para cualquier investigador interesado en los textos de Miguel de Cervantes comprobar que, tras la explosión de estudios surgidos en torno a las celebraciones del año 2005, cuarto centenario de la publicación del Quijote, el cervantismo está más vivo que nunca. De hecho, es precisamente ahora, tras el paso del ciclón de publicaciones que trajo consigo dicho aniversario, cuando surge la oportunidad de realizar análisis nacidos más al calor de la curiosidad real y el rigor y menos de la oportunidad o el oportunismo. Este libro supone una muy valiosa aportación para el campo de los estudios cervantinos pero también para el estudio de la literatura británica, y especialistas de ambos campos encontrarán en él material ineludible y original con el que ganar en conocimiento y sobre todo, una herramienta con la que continuar avanzando en el no siempre bien conocido ni estudiado campo de las relaciones literarias y culturales hispano-británicas.’ — Ana M. Rodríguez-Rodríguez, Iberoamericana IX.36, 2009, 189-91
  • ‘Rather than emanating from the Cervantesmania that has informed most of the book-length studies on Cervantes's influence on English-speaking writers [since the 2005 anniversary year], the present volume benefits from the fact that its contributors come from among the pre-2005 generation of critics, who have drawn on their experience of digging out Cervantes's actual influence on British literature.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 47.1, January 2011

Chicago of the Balkans: Budapest in Hungarian Literature 1900-1939
Gwen Jones
Legenda (General Series) 4 March 2013

  • ‘Based on a historical contextualization of the social background of writers and the ideological debates of the time, a good knowledge of the secondary literature, a detailed discussion of the content and plots of relevant literary works and ample quotations in Hungarian (consistently translated in English) from a representative sample of novels and short stories, Jones’s book is a social history of Budapest literature.’ — Alexander Vari, Slavonic and East European Review 93.2, April 2015, 352-55 (full text online)

Childhood as Memory, Myth and Metaphor: Proust, Beckett, and Bourgeois
Catherine Crimp
Legenda (General Series) 21 December 2012

  • ‘Challenging and original, this is a study that will appeal not just to specialists of these three creative figures but also to everyone interested in narrative, metaphors, and the ways in which the image of the child simultaneously enables and challenges creativity.’ — Rosemary Lloyd, French Studies 67.4, October 2013, 584-85
  • ‘The study is informed by a wide array of philosophical and theoretical points of reference and relies especially on Maurice Blanchot’s writing to make a convincing case for the importance of childhood in the oeuvres of Proust, Beckett and Bourgeois.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 50.4, October 2014, 504

Classical Rhetoric and the German Poet: 1620 to the Present
Anna Carrdus
Legenda (General Series) 1 January 1997

  • ‘The tone is confident, the style lucid. Within a few pages the reader senses how purposeful the exposition is, and how well thought out. But what makes Anna Carrdus's performance so assured is her obvious commitment to poetry itself... It concludes with a wish that may sound audacious, yet which the undertaking wholly justifies: 'My findings will, I hope, open up an opportunity for scholarship to revise current perceptions of the history of German poetry.' She has already revised them herself, single-handed.’ — Peter Skrine, Modern Language Review 94.1, 1999, 243-5 (full text online)
  • ‘Die Analysen sind treffich, und die Er≥rterungen zum literarhistorischen und poetologischen Kontext zeugen von groôer Kennerschaft.’ — Joachim Knape, Germanistik 41.2, 2000, 419

Cognitive Confusions: Dreams, Delusions and Illusions in Early Modern Culture
Edited by Ita Mac Carthy, Kirsti Sellevold and Olivia Smith
Legenda (General Series) 13 February 2017

  • ‘Cognition-centered scholarship is here, and Dreams, Delusions and Illusions in Early Modern Culture is a welcome new contribution... I found myself wanting to dialogue with each of these writers... they enter into essential new investigations into the diversity of our cognitive experiences.’ — Donald Beecher, Renaissance Quarterly 71.1, 2018, 267-69
  • ‘Sustained and intensive collaboration is evident in the collection, where every chapter displays a profound and fruitful engagement with cognitive psychology and philosophy that illuminates both early modern literary texts and contemporary science... These essays are thought-provoking, rigorous, and inventive themselves, and as exemplary models of properly collaborative research should interest early modernists, literary scholars, and other researchers into cognition.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 54.3, July 2018, 372

Conceptions of the Absurd: From Surrealism to Chestov's and Fondane's Existential Thought
Ramona Fotiade
Legenda (General Series) 1 December 2001

  • ‘Fotiade argues persuasively that the ideas of Chestov and Fondane form the basis of a tradition of dissident thought in the 1920s and beyond... an original and illuminating contribution to French intellectual history, a clearly organized and closely argued exploration of a neglected field.’ — Douglas Smith, French Studies LVII.3, 2003, 414-15

A Cultural Citizen of the World: Sigmund Freud's Knowledge and Use of British and American Writings
S. S. Prawer
Legenda (General Series) 17 July 2009

  • ‘This magisterial survey of British and American intellectual history from the sixteenth century to the present, as viewed through the lens of the creator of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, confirms once more that Prawer remains one of our discipline’s leading spokesmen and luminaries.’ — Robert K. Weninger, Comparative Critical Studies 7.2–3, 2010, 395-401
  • ‘Based on an intensive study of the original German text of Freud’s writings, letters, and journals. This is the first book to make a full and systematic map of Freud’s use of English literature. Freud was fascinated by writings from many nations and languages, and his use of English shows the great range of his reading... Though he was a reader par excellence, he was also a case study in how world literature can be used by men and women who are not professional literary scholars or critics - and of how much it can come to mean to them, and to their sense of who they are.’The Year's Work in English Studies 2011, 691)
  • ‘Shows the remarkable range of reading and the gift for lively and attractive expression that characterized all his work... The result is much the fullest study of Freud’s Anglophilia that has yet been written.’ — Ritchie Robertson, Modern Language Review 108.4, October 2013, 1262-64 (full text online)

Decadence and the Senses
Edited by Jane Desmarais and Alice Condé
Legenda (General Series) 17 May 2017

  • ‘I found Maxwell’s discussion of the tuberose, and more speci cally Walter Pater’s conscription of that flower to describe his own rarefied prose style, to be particularly interesting, as Pater’s writing is so often considered the acme of Decadent prose. It seems that the orchid that famously reminded Dorian Gray of the seven deadly sins should, perhaps, have been a tuberose. Equally interesting is Angela Dunstan’s suggestion that Theodore Watts-Dunton’s roman-à-clef Aylwin became for readers a means of owning the celebrity of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, or the notion extended by Liz Renes that John Singer Sargent’s Madame X should be considered a meditation on the white, sculptural body and its changing role in modern art.’ — Jamie Horrocks, English Literature in Translation 61.4, 2018, 525-28
  • ‘It is perhaps fitting that the unity of a book on Decadent literature should be best experienced ‘decomposed’ to give place to the independence of each chapter. There is no doubt, however, that the high quality of its constituent parts forms a significant contribution to Sensory Studies and that the collection is a ‘must-read’ for any student of Decadence at the fin de siècle and beyond.’ — Patricia Pulham, Modern Language Review 114.1, January 2019, 128-29 (full text online)
  • ‘Desmarais and Condé have done an enormous service by opening up this can of repulsive worms.’ — Dennis Denisoff, Victorian Studies 61.2, Winter 2019, 554-56

Decolonizing Modernism: James Joyce and the Development of Spanish American Fiction
José Luis Venegas
Legenda (General Series) 11 February 2010

  • ‘There is something delightfully Joycean and Cortazarian about the volume which demands our close collaboration and participation as we jump around to consult the original texts, dipping into Ulysses and Rayuela, for example, then back to the study in question, not necessarily in chronological order. In this sense, I felt like the quintessential lector cómplice. This review is the final step in my literary contribution.’ — John Walker, Bulletin of Spanish Studies 88.6, September 2011, 929-30
  • ‘Among the many valuable assets of Venegas's cohesive study are its painstaking research and its suggestive ways of interpreting the presence of Joyce in Latin American fiction... A significant contribution to the critical debate over the nature of modernism.’ — Alberto Lázaro, James Joyce Literary Supplement 26.1, Spring 2012, 5-6
  • ‘An impeccably researched and systematic study which has much to offer to the 'planetary' dimension of Joyce scholarship.’ — Patricia Novillo-Corvalán, James Joyce Broadsheet 88, February 2011
  • ‘An insightful and illuminating intertextual analysis... takes a refreshing approach by rejecting the notion of a cultural or intellectual ‘centre’ informing the periphery, or, in Latin American terms, the civilized educating the barbaric. Instead, both Joyce and those he influenced (directly or indirectly) are seen as the creators of ‘an alternative literary history’.’ — Victoria Carpenter, The Year's Work in Modern Language Studies 72, 2012, 247
  • ‘In this book, José Luis Venegas takes existing debates on James Joyce's influence on modern Spanish American fiction decisively further... Thanks to its balanced focus on theory, criticism and literary analysis, the book is comprehensive in its approach yet highly readable. With quotations given in both English and Spanish, this comparative study is a valuable research tool not only for Hispanists but also for critics of English literature working on Joyce.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 49.2 (2013), 226-27
  • ‘Must be greeted as a new study that further enriches previous critical revisions of monolithic views of 'canonical' modernism... By relocating Joyce as a 'peripheral' modernist writer in the literary map of Latin America, Decolonizing Modernism offers an innovative and alternative reinterpretation of both European and Spanish-American literary histories that eschews the restrictions of national boundaries and canonical readings and opens untrodden paths for the emergence of (even) more revisionary studies of modernism in the future.’ — M. Teresa Caneda Cabrera, James Joyce Quarterly 48.4 (2011), 772-75
  • ‘A concise but eloquent demonstration of the potential of truly non-Eurocentric comparative studies between Latin American and European literatures... At the center of Decolonizing Modernism lies the belief in an intimate relationship between literary form and structure and specific history and geography, a relationship that asks for a critical approach that combines the analysis of formal as well as historical aspects.’ — Paulo Moreira, Hispanófila 168 (May 2013), 174-75

Desiring the Dead: Necrophilia and Nineteenth-Century French Literature
Lisa Downing
Legenda (General Series) 1 June 2003

  • ‘Downing is working outside the scope of any simple discourse of pathology, and perhaps outside the queer undoing of pathology as such. ...this is an impressive first book, striking without being facile, theoretically complex without being unruly, and attentive to literary qualities in the chosen texts while sustaining its thematic argument.’ — Peter Cryle, Modern Language Review 100.2, 2005, 505-6 (full text online)
  • ‘This is a successful, richly structured, and thought-provoking exploration of 'the cultural fantasy of necrophilia'.’ — Carol Rifelj, Nineteenth-Century French Studies 33, n. 1 and 2, Fall-Winter 2004-2005
  • ‘Downing's approach throughout is essentially post-Faucauldian and psychoanalitic. Her style, at once sober and engaging, is a model for academic prose in general. ... The work also indicates a new direction for death studies, and despite its omissions deserves consideration in this regard.’ — Jason Hartford, The Journal of the Midwest Modern Language Association Spring 2004, 119-21

Dostoevsky and the Epileptic Mode of Being
Paul Fung
Legenda (General Series) 10 December 2014

  • ‘Fung avoids the trap of a simplistic focus on Dostoevsky’s own real-life epilepsy. While noting the author's terror at the illness [...], he remains wisely off-trend by withholding any cod-scientific correlation between epilepsy and literary creativity. Fung’s interest is, rather, in what Dostoevsky wrote, more than the fact that his slow periods of recovery meant that he often could not write anything at all. And by focusing on ‘moments of caesuras and breaks’, Fung also sets himself apart from the myriad critics drawn to the famous scenes where verbal, and sometimes physical, arguments erupt with astonishing force... A Dostoevsky scholar to watch.’ — Andre van Loon, Review 31 online
  • ‘It’s a great philosophical read, which squeezes Dostoevsky and his characters in and out of the minds of any number of puissant Western thinkers. It deserves a welcome and respected place up on the bookshelves of Academia, next to the many fascinating books on the life and works of that perverse and talented genius of Russian literature: Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky.’ — U. R. Bowie, classical-russian-literature.blogspot.co.uk 7 July 2015
  • ‘This book continues the philosophical discussion of Fedor Dostoevskii started by Friedrich Nietzsche, Lev Shestov, Alex de Jonge, and many others. Paul Fung de- scribes existential experiences of caesura (suspension), timelessness, and anticipation of death, which he attributes to some of Dostoevskii’s characters and, possibly, to the writer himself.’ — Irina Sirotkina, Slavic Review 75.1, Spring 2016, 210-11
  • ‘Paul Fung opens new perspectives onto Dostoevsky's post-Siberian novels by focusing on their preoccupation, at once morbid and exalted, with the moment, whose ineffable paradoxes congeal metaphorically around the epileptic attack.’ — Mark R. Pettiss, Russian Review 75.1, 2016, 140-42