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HUMANITIES 109 active in trying to decipher the original verse: Winnifrith muses at one point in his Textual Introduction) turned out not to be equal to the task. Readers have good reason to be grateful to Neufeldt and, indeed to the Garland Press for righting this situation. For Neufeld!'s scholarship is as meticulous as his critical sense is courteous and engaging. His edition includes'206 poems, fragments, and verse translations: some sixty more than Winnifrith's edition, including 'twenty-seven items never before printed or only partially printed: His commentary includes as well earlier variant forms. There is much to praise here because the editor's scholarship is accompanied by a narrative sense that makes of his accounts of Charlotte Bronte's poetic career and of the history of her poems (including her widower's own'editorial' activities and the better-known machinations ofT.J.Wise) a compelling story. His commentaryand notes show akind of scholarly courtesy which enlightens the reader, at the same time leaving us free, as Charlotte Bronte's pseudonym was intended to do, to read, wander, wade unencumbered in what the poet herself described as this 'tumult' of 'weed, sand, and shingle: We are grateful to Neufeldt in ways in which we would have liked to have been grateful to the editors of the Clarendon Villette. (F.T. FLAHIFF) James Hogg. Tales of Love and Mystery. Edited by David Groves Canongate. 416. £9.95, 4.95 paper In recent years James Hogg's The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinnerhas become something ofa classic. Andre Gide was an early admirer and in the last few years the novel has become an ideal example of a narrative which deconstructs itseif, the kind of work one would need to invent if it had not already been written. The editorial work of Douglas S. Mack has added much to our knowledge of Hogg and has allowed us to see him as more than the writer of one work. The collection under review presents us with two poems and six prose narratives, all of which have been edited from early nineteenth-century periodicals or from Hogg's little known Winter Evening Tales (1820) . . Almost half of the space is taken up by the long, indeed over-long, 'Love Adventures of Mr. George Cochrane: The story is an inverted picaresque in that the narrator appears to be boasting of his amorous exploits but is in reality played with by women who are craftier than he is. The discrepancy between Hogg's presentation of the narrator and the narrator's view of himself is a central emphasis (as it is in the fust-person narratives of Hogg's contemporary John Galt). Hogg also makes much of the contrast between the physical and linguistic vitality ofthe Borderers and the effete condescension of his narrator, who effuses about the 'doric softness in the tones that melted the very heart' and rhapsodizes about 'that lovely and delightful creature, for whom my whole vitals had been so long inflamed with love.' David Groves has good things to say about this novella in his Introduction, but his suggestion that the varied religiOUS and social backgroundsofthe girls and women show 'Hogg's theme of the need for a more unified nation' seems far-fetched. Of the two poems, 'The First Sermon' (Blackwood's Magazine, 1830) is especially fine. The clash between the tone of superior bemusement on the narrator's partand the genuine horror of which he treats is very subtly handled. 'Seeking the Houdy' and 'Some Terrible Letters from Scotland' are the best of the tales and are remarkable for the tension between their quasi-documentary qualities and the preternatural horrors introduced. David Groves has given this collection a good introduction and a useful glossary. Not everything here comes from Hogg's top drawer and the general level is not quite up to that of Hogg's Selected Stories and Sketches as edited by Mack. There are, however, some very good things here and the anthology adds appreciably to our knowledge of Hogg's work. (H.B. DE GROOT) Gary Wihl. Ruskin and the Rhetoric of Infallibility Yale Studies in English '94. Yale University...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 109-110
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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