Vol. IV

No. 10

Issue no 42: October/November 2007




Click  for the main pages of the current issue of THE OSCHOLARS
For the Table of Contents, click|To hub page|To THE OSCHOLARS home page




« Are there not books that can make us live more in one single hour than life can make us live in a score of shameful years? »


We hope where appropriate to review in future issues at least some of the books listed here. As always, we are happy to hear from anybody who would like to review; and we are always willing to consider for publication abstracts or précis of journal articles or published or unpublished doctoral theses.

As usual, names of subscribers to THE OSCHOLARS are printed in bold.

Books in French are covered more fully in our sister publication rue des beaux arts, the bimestrial bulletin of the French branch of The Oscar Wilde Society, which can be accessed via our hub page. This does not preclude reviews in THE OSCHOLARS.

Until this issue, we also included here a survey of Journals.  Our continued reconstruction of our website has suggested a new free-standing page, and the survey will now be found as ‘The Rack & the Press’.

A list of recommended bookshops appears in our section ‘Some Sell and Others Buy’. If ordering, please mention THE OSCHOLARS as this helps ensure a flow of information.


Table of Contents: 1. Publications and papers on Oscar Wilde                    go

on De Profundis

on the ‘Fairy Tales' (1)

on the ‘Fairy Tales’ (2)

on Salome (1)

on Salome (2)

on Teleny

on Oscar Wilde

on Oscar Wilde and André Gide

on Oscar Wilde and Henry James

on Oscar Wilde and Vincent O’Sullivan

on Oscar Wilde and Plagiarism

on Oscar Wilde and Victorian Fiction

on Oscar Wilde and Vienna

on Oscar Wilde and Coffee

on Oscar Wilde and Poison

on Oscar Wilde and Resurrection

on Oscar Wao


TABLE OF CONTENTS II : Books, Articles & Papers on the Period             go

on London (1)

on Somerville and Ross

on London (2)

on Octave Mirbeau

on Dandies

on Valancourt Books







Oscar Wilde and Vienna

We are pleased to announce the publication by two of our Associate Editors, Sandra Mayer and Barbara Pfeifer, of an article on ‘The Reception of Oscar Wilde and Bernard Shaw in the Light of Early Twentieth-Century Austrian Censorshipin the journal Platform (Postgraduate eJournal of Theatre & Performing Arts) published at Royal Holloway College, University of London.  Download it as a .pdf by clicking the link.



Oscar Wilde's Plagiarism: The Triumph of Art Over Ego by Florina Tufescu

Dublin: Irish Academic Press


'An immensely enjoyable read which wears its learning lightly. It might help to curb the scholarly paranoia about plagiarism and might be read well beyond the academy.'

Professor Declan Kiberd, author of Irish Classics

'This book addresses the very controversial issue of Oscar Wilde's "plagiarism" head-on, sifts through the evidence, fully contextualises it inthe literary practices of decadent writers of the 1890s, and proposes a new theory to account for it.'

Dr Jarlath Killeen, Trinity College Dublin

'Florina Tufescu's book makes us rethink romanticism and classicism as well as plagiarism. Beginning with the frequent historical allegations of Wilde's plagiaristic techniques, Tufescu studies the modern French and transatlantic roots of acknowledged and unacknowledged intertextuality, and then analyzes romantic originality and classical borrowing. She argues ultimately for the integrity of classical borrowing in literary tradition. The most theoretically sophisticated study of plagiarism since Paul Saint-Amour's TheCopywrights, the book includes sections on intellectual property and copyright of use in the classroom and on the internet.'

Regenia Gagnier, University of Exeter


Florina Tufescu is an Associate Editor of THE OSCHOLARS.




Oscar Wilde as a Character in Victorian Fiction

The publication for 27th November of Oscar Wilde as a Character in Victorian Fiction by Angela Kingston, our Australian Associate Editor (New York: Palgrave) is now given as December.


This book documents how Oscar Wilde was appropriated as a fictional character by no less than thirty-two of his contemporaries. Focusing on Wilde’s relationships with many of these writers, Kingston examines and critiques ‘Wildean’ portraits by such celebrated authors as Joseph Conrad, Arthur Conan Doyle, Henry James, George Bernard Shaw and Bram Stoker, as well as some lesser-known writers. Many fascinating, little-known biographical and literary connections are revealed. While this work will be of significant interest to scholars of Wilde, it is also written in a clear, accessible style which will appeal to the non-academic reader with a general interest in Wilde or the late Victorian period.




‘This book fills an important gap in the field. Kingston brings together a broad range of works that reflect Wilde's influence during his lifetime and well beyond.  Its genre of annotated-bibliography-as-narrative stands as engaged criticism, contributing greatly to our knowledge of both the artist as critic and critic as artist. This is not straightforward biography, but rigorous textual analysis that broadens our understanding of Wilde as author and cultural subject.’

-- Frederick Roden, University of Connecticut




Fairy Tales


We greatly welcome the publication of The Fairy Tales of Oscar Wilde, by Jarlath Killeeen (Aldershot: Ashgate 20070.  This is, remarkably, the first full length study of the ‘fairy tales’, and will be reviewed in THE OSCHOLARS by the Editor.  202pp,  Hardback, ISBN 978-0756-5813-9.  £50.




Fairy tales

Sébastien Salbayre: ‘The language of decadent childhood in Oscar Wilde's tales’ has been published (19th September 2007) in La Revue du GRAAT Volume 2, n° 36: Histoires d'enfant, histoires d'enfance / Stories for children, histories of childhood (actes du colloque, Université François-Rabelais, 18th-19th November 2005, ed. Rosie Findlay and Sébastien Salbayre.  Publisher : Presses universitaires François-Rabelais, Tours ISBN 978-2-86906-234-4.





A new edition (bilingual, French and German) of the libretto of Salome for the Strauss opera has been published (15th September 2007) by L'Avant-scène Opera, no.240. As with so many versions of Salome, it presents an interesting example of translation studies, for it is translated into French by Georges Pucher from the original German libretto by Hedwig Lachmann from Oscar Wilde’s French. €25.00. 145 pp. with illustrations in black and white and colour. Bibliography, Discography, Filmography. ISBN 978-2-84385-239-8.


Also published, by Cerf in Paris (27th February 2007), is Salomé, du voilé au dévoilé by Marc Bochet, about which we will report further.




Sarah E. Maier: ‘Symbolist Salomés and the Dance of Dionysus’, has been published in Nineteenth-Century Contexts (Vol. 28, No. 3, September 2006) 211-23 (pp. 220-1).




The Resurrection of Oscar Wilde

On 27th August Lutterworth Press published The Resurrection of Oscar Wilde: A Cultural Afterlife by Julia Wood. ISBN-10: 0718830717; ISBN-13: 978-0718830717

Between 1995 and 2000 a number of events took place to commemorate the centenaries of Oscar Wilde's conviction for gross indecency in London and his death in Paris. This absorbing book examines five of these commemorations, the consecration of a window in Wilde's honour in Poet's Corner, Peter Tatchell's campaign for a Royal Pardon, the 1997 film Wilde, the unveiling of Maggi Hambling's statue of Wilde in Adelaide Street, and the public gatherings on the centenary of his death. Through these events the author explores the ways in which Wilde's life and legacy continue to influence communities in Britain and throughout the world. Grounded in an impressive range of critical scholarship, this work offers a unique and personal approach springing from the author's participation in several commemorations. The reader is introduced to Wilde's legacy not simply as a wit, author and playwright, but also as a symbol and source of inspiration for a range of communities. Wood examines material, ranging from contemporary accounts of Wilde's life and trial through to internet discussion groups, in an engaging and thought-provoking style to demonstrate the on-going cultural impact of the tragedy of Oscar Wilde. Julia Wood has lectured in philosophy and literature. She has published articles in 'The Journal of Oscar Wilde Studies', 'The Pink Paper' and 'Philosopher's Magazine'. She has featured on ITV's 'This Morning', and has been interviewed by 'The Independent', 'The Daily Mail' and 'Woman Magazine'.




Henry James, Oscar Wilde and Aesthetic Culture

Edinburgh University Press publishes Henry James, Oscar Wilde and Aesthetic Culture by Michèle Mendelssohn in the series Edinburgh Studies in Transatlantic Literatures. ISBN 9780748623853 (074862385X) £65.00.  Dr Mendelssohn edited our Richard Ellmann assessment, and is now an Associate Editor of THE OSCHOLARS.


'In this incisive and wonderfully readable study, Michèle Mendelssohn shows how James and Wilde learned from each other's work, pondered each other's careers, and admired and disdained each other's gifts. Marked by brilliantly detailed renderings of period literary relations and deft close readings, Henry James, Oscar Wilde, and Aesthetic Culture intervenes powerfully in debates about taste, commodification, sexuality, professionalization, identity, and originality in Victorian and modernist literature and culture.'


Douglas Mao, Associate Professor, Department of English, Cornell University.

‘In this engrossing book, Michèle Mendelssohn challenges the longstanding assumption that Henry James and Oscar Wilde shunned each other’s influence, James because of homosexual panic, Wilde because of dandified indifference. On the contrary, Mendelssohn demonstrates how their conflictual relationship, comprised of esteem and contempt, admiration and frustration, attraction and jealousy in equal measure, contributed to shaping the transatlantic culture of aestheticism. Written with verve, and substantiated with meticulous research, Mendelssohn’s study offers a fresh perspective on aestheticism while illuminating the obscurities of a fascinating literary friendship.’

Maud Ellmann, Donald and Marilyn Keough Professor of Irish Studies, Department of English, University of Notre Dame.



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS (NB The book will include 33 black and white images)

'I have asked Henry James not to bring his friend Oscar Wilde': Washington Square and the politics of Transatlantic Aestheticism
The Gentle Art of Making Enemies: Plagiarism, Appropriation, and the Reinvention of Aestheticism
The school of the future as well as the present: Wilde's impressions of James in 'Intentions' and 'The Picture of Dorian Gray'.
‘Wild thoughts and desire! Things I can’t tell you - words I can’t speak!’: the Drama of Identity in ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ and ‘Guy Domville’
Despoiling Poynton: James, the Wilde trials, and Interior Decoration
‘A nest of almost infant blackmailers!’: the End of Innocence in ‘The Turn of the Screw’ and De Profundis









A new edition of Teleny appeared last year, published by the independent publishing house Mondial in New York.  It is cautiously attributed to Anonymous, with ‘Oscar Wilde et al.’ added in parentheses.  Printed on good quality paper, with a glossy soft cover, it is much enhanced by eight linocuts (black and white), by Uday K. Dhar, who, though born in England, lives in the United States .  There is no critical apparatus save for a short blurb on the cover.  The linocuts, somewhat in the style of German expressionism, can be purchased separately from the publisher, who maintains a website at ISBN 1-59569-036-0.


We will return to this edition in our Teleny special supplement, guest edited by John McRae, scheduled for Autumn 2008.


Mondial also publish Recollections of Oscar Wilde by André Gide, Ernest La Jeunesse, and Franz Blei.  ISBN: 9781595690814. 104pp.  Paperback $13.85  

Both these books can be ordered directly from Mondial  @





The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde


The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde, Volume IV: Criticism: Historical Criticism, Intentions, The Soul of Man, edited by Josephine M. Guy, was published by Oxford University Press on

6th September 2007.  £85.00 Hardback 702 pages.  For more details, visit:



Oscar Wao


The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz (New York: Riverhead) was published on 6th September 2007.  352 pages.  ISBN 9781594489587.T his is a sort of spin-off novel, and will be reviewed for THE OSCHOLARS by María DeGuzmán, Associate Professor of English & Comparative Literature and Director of Latina/o Studies, University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill.


The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is also available as an audiobook read by Jonathan Davis with Staci Snell (16 Hours; 13 CDs) 9780143142805






Aspects of Wilde

Callum James Books announce that they will be reprinting Vincent O’Sullivan’s Aspects of Wilde.  We shall be reviewing this, and in future, paying more attention to the Victorian and Edwardian reprints from this small, independent publisher, which has also republished A.J.A. Symons’ Notes on Oscar Wilde. Orders can be placed at @






Oscar Wilde ou les cendres de la gloire


Editions Mengès announce the publication (27th November) of Oscar Wilde ou les cendres de la gloire by Frédéric Ferney. 220 pages, 200 illustrations ; soft cover 17.5 x 24.5

ISBN : 978-2-85620-479-5. 25 €

Frédéric Ferney was born in 1951, and presents a books programme Le Bateau Livre on the television channel France 5every Sunday. He is a novelist, dramatic critic, journalist and presenter.  He is the author of La Comédie Littéraire, of l'Éloge de la France immobile, of Aragon, la seule façon d'exister and of Le dernier amour de monsieur M.





Coffee with Oscar Wilde


Coffee with Oscar Wilde by Merlin Holland with a foreword by Simon Callow (144 pages) was published by Duncan Baird in September.  The publisher’s description runs


Oscar Wilde’s own grandson, with the help of actor and author Simon Callow—who has performed Wilde’s work on stage—capture the essence of this wittiest of all playwrights. Set in Paris, where he fled after the scandalous trial that revealed his homosexuality, Wilde chats about language, his mother (an esteemed Irish folklorist), transforming his life into a work of art (“My great tragedy is that I put my genius into my life—and only my talent into my work”), his time in prison, his concept of morality, and why he thinks “in life, style, not sincerity, is essential.”


This will be reviewed in THE OSCHOLARS by Dr Marie-Luise Kohlke, University of Swansea.




De Profundis


The publishing house Txalaparta recently published De Profundis, translated into Basque by Aitor Arana.



Photo: ©





Poison, Passion, and Personality’

‘Wilde's Renaissance: Poison, Passion, and Personality’ by Yvonne Ivory has been published in Victorian Literature and Culture, Volume 35, Issue 02, September 2007, pp 517-536.
Published online by Cambridge University Press 29th June 2007. The abstract is available on line.





Editing Journalism: The Case of Oscar Wilde


John Stokes (King's College London) and Mark Turner (King's College London) gave a paper on ‘Editing Journalism: The Case of Oscar Wilde’ on Friday, 16th March 2007 at the Society for Textual Scholarship’s 14th Biennial International Interdisciplinary Conference at New York University.







Representations of London

Lawrence Phillips (ed.):  A Mighty Mass of Brick and Smoke, Victorian and Edwardian Representations of London. Amsterdam/New York, NY,: Rodopi,  2007. 306 pp.   Hb: 978-90-420-2290-4€ 62 / US$ 87.  Series: DQR Studies in Literature.


Of all eras of London’s history, the Victorian and Edwardian city continues to stimulate the literary, visual, and popular imaginations like no other. This collection explores the unique relationship between the literary, and more broadly, artistic imagination and experience of the Victorian and Edwardian city. It includes some major figures such as Wordsworth, Dickens, and James, but also other writers and artists who are all but forgotten. Bringing together some of the leading scholars working on representations of Victorian and Edwardian London, this collection will be of interest to scholars, researchers and students working on literary London and more broadly the urban in the nineteenth- and early twentieth-centuries.

This will be reviewed for THE OSCHOLARS by Professor John Batchelor, University of Newcastle, England.





1. Lawrence Phillips: Introduction: A Mighty Mass of Brick and Smoke

2. L.J. Nicoletti: Morbid Topographies: Placing Suicide in Victorian London

3. Efraim Sicher: The ‘Attraction of Repulsion’: Dickens, Modernity, and Representation

4. Adam Hansen: Exhibiting Vagrancy, 1851: Victorian London and the ‘Vagabond Savage’

5. David Skilton: ‘When Dreams are Coming’: Wordsworth, Jefferies and Visions of the London Crowd

6. Philip Tew: James Thomson’s London: Beyond the Apocalyptic Vision of the City

7. Keith Wilson: Surveying Victorian and Edwardian Londoners: George R. Sims’ Living London

8. Dehn Gilmore: Rehearsals, Refutations, Representation: Gissing’s New Grub Street and the Problem of an Urban Realism

9. Julian Wolfreys: The Hieroglyphic Other: The Beetle, London, and the Abyssal Subject

10 Alan Robinson: Socio-Spatial Relations in Henry James’ The Wings of the Dove

11. Lawrence Phillips: Jack London and the East End: Socialism, Imperialism and the Bourgeois Ethnographer

12. Anne Witchard: Thomas Burke: Son of London

13. Samantha Matthews: The London Necropolis: Suburban Cemeteries and the Necropolitan Imaginary

Notes on Contributors – Index




London, Literature, and Art 1870-1914



Conceiving the City: London, Literature, and Art 1870-1914 by Nicholas Freeman has been published by Oxford University Press.  Dr Freeman’s article ‘Wilde's Edwardian Afterlife: Somerset Maugham, Aleister Crowley, and The Magician’ is announced as a forthcoming publication in Literature & History 2007






‘The Myth of the Female Dandy’ by Miranda Gill. French Studies Vol. 61, No. 2 April 2007 pp. 167-181.




Somerville & Ross

‘Plagiarism, popularity, and the dilemma of artistic worth: E. OE. Somerville and Martin Ross's Some Experiences of an Irish R.M. (1899)’ by Anne Jamison, School of
Languages and Literature, University of Ulster. Coleraine. Northern Ireland, European Journal of English Studies, Vol. 11, Issue 1 April 2007, pp. 65 – 78.

This essay focusses on the unpublished legal papers relating to the 19th-century Irish women authors E. OE. Somerville (1858 - 1949) and Martin Ross (1862 - 1915) and their case of plagiarism against the authors of By the Brown Bog in 1913. The article begins by summarising the ways in which the introduction of copyright law in Great Britain in 1709 altered aesthetic and legal definitions of authorship, and how this new conceptualisation of the author figure effectively disenfranchised collaborative modes of creativity and literary production. In so doing, the essay investigates Somerville and Ross's classification as popular,
collaborative short story writers. The popularity of their Irish R.M. tales, it will be argued, harmed their case of plagiarism. The study will use a detailed analysis of Somerville and Ross's legal correspondence to argue for the ways in which copyright law not only defined the 'author', but also the term 'originality', which was sorely affected by aesthetic and moral conceptions of 'good' and 'bad' literature.




Octave Mirbeau

Pierre Michel (Société Octave Mirbeau) writes


 Chers collègues,

 J'ai le plaisir de vous informer de la parution, à l'occasion du très riche et passionnant colloque Octave Mirbeau de Strasbourg, d'un joli petit volume illustré intitulé Un aller simple pour l'Octavie. Il s'agit d'un ensemble de textes recueillis par Kinda Mubaideen, de l'université de Strasbourg, et inspirés par La 628-E8 d'Octave Mirbeau. Ils sont rédigés par des participants, de toutes nationalités, aux ateliers d'écriture animés par Kinda Mubaideen,  à Strasbourg et à Sarajevo (où ont collaboré amicalement des Bosniaques, des Serbes et des Croates). L'artiste strasbourgeois Lolo Wagner en a assuré les nombreuses illustrations (36 en tout).

En même temps qu'un hommage à Mirbeau et à sa 628-E8, il s'agit d'un travail qui contribue à rapprocher les peuples et les cultures, conformémant au voeu le plus cher de l'imprécateur au coeur fidèle. Et quel bel hommage, aussi, à la langue et à la littérature françaises de la part d'étudiants et traducteurs étrangers ! 

Ce beau petit volume illustré, édité par la Société Octave Mirbeau, peut être commandé à la Société Mirbeau, 10 bis rue André Gautier, 49000 - ANGERS.
Son prix est de 10 euros franco




New from Valancourt

James D Jenkins and Valancourt Books announce their latest publications of new scholarly editions of Victorian-era texts.


Round the Red Lamp and Other Medical Writings by Arthur Conan Doyle, edited by Robert Darby.  Includes the 1894 short story collection Round the Red Lamp, plus three previously uncollected stories and a generous selection of Dr. Doyle's nonfiction medical writings.

The Rose and the Key (1871) by J. Sheridan Le Fanu, edited by Frances Chiu.  Features a groundbreaking new introduction, arguing for reconsideration of Le Fanu's politics and a reading of the novel as a commentary on Anglo-Irish tensions; this edition is the first to reprint the original serialized text of the novel.

Mystery of the Sea (1902) by Bram Stoker, edited by Carol A. Senf.

The Garden God (1905) by Forrest Reid, edited by Michael Matthew Kaylor.  A meticulous scholarly edition of Reid's controversial novel of love between two schoolboys.  Dedicated to Henry James, Reid's idol, the book was condemned by James, who never spoke to Reid again.

The King's Assegai, The Weird of Deadly Hollow, and Renshaw Fanning's Quest by Bertram Mitford, edited by Gerald Monsman.  Three 1890s adventure novels dealing with life in South Africa before and after British colonization.

Nada the Lily (1892) by H. Rider Haggard, edited by Gerald Monsman.  Haggard's adventure/romance/fantasy set among the Zulus, before British colonization.


More information on these and other titles can be found on the website at, along with information for those interested in contributing an introduction for a future edition.




Announcement from Taylor & Francis - Arts & Humanities Collection


The Arts & Humanities Collection features online content published by Routledge between 1997 and the present day. 93 journal titles are available to explore online via the easily searchable informaworldT platform.  28 journals are listed in Thomson Scientific's Arts & Humanities Citation Index and Social Sciences Citation Index.  The Arts & Humanities Collection covers History, Literature, Language & Linguistics, Music, Philosophy, Religion, Theatre & Performance and Visual Arts.

The Arts & Humanities Collection includes:


Contemporary British History - an iFirst title giving immediate access to the latest key research articles

Prestigious titles such as Slavery & Abolition, Atlantic Studies and Social History

Heritage titles such as Journal of Imperial & Commonwealth History - now in its 34th year of publication

Journals published in association with prominent societies such as Intellectual History Review - the official journal of the International Society for Intellectual History

For more information on the Arts & Humanities Collection, please visit­_artscollection



Click  for the main pages of the current issue of THE OSCHOLARS

For the Table of Contents, click|To hub page|To THE OSCHOLARS home page image8