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Wales Book of the Year 2019

The University of Wales Press is delighted to receive two nominations for Wales Book of the Year 2019. Congratulations to Gethin Matthews and Lisa Sheppard, whose books have been shortlisted in the Creative Non-fiction category. Having a Go at the Kaiser: A Welsh Family at War by Gethin Matthews This book is based on more

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Author blog: Minerva’s Gothics

Elizabeth Neiman introduces her new book, Minerva’s Gothics: The Politics and Poetics of Romantic Exchange, 1780-1820. Between 1790 and 1820, William Lane’s London printing press Minerva published an unprecedented number of novels, many by obscure female authors. Because Minerva novels catered to the day’s fashion for sentimental themes and Gothic romance, they were and still are

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The Role of Wales in UK Nuclear History

John Baylis introduces his new book, Wales and the Bomb: The Role of Welsh Scientists and Engineers in the British Nuclear Programme. The history of the British nuclear weapons programme from the Second World War onwards is now well known. We also know quite a lot about some of the central figures, like William Penney, involved

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Author blog: Soul-Health

Daniel McCann introduces his new book, Soul-Health: Therapeutic Reading in Later Medieval England. The connection between reading and healing has a history far deeper and far darker than modern ‘bibliotherapeutics’ would lead us to believe. While you don’t have to look far to find accounts of ‘consoling fictions’ offering mental and physical health, looking a

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Author blog: Servants and the Gothic

Kathleen Hudson introduces her new book, Servants and the Gothic, 1764-1831: A half-told tale. In William Godwin’s 1794 novel Things as they are, or The Adventures of Caleb Williams, servant protagonist Caleb recounts a story of a complicated, often antagonist employer-employee relationship as a means of preventing the circulation of a future ‘half-told and mangled tale’.

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Author blog: Red Hearts and Roses?

Rhiannon Ifans introduces her new book, Red Hearts and Roses? Welsh Valentine Songs and Poems. Who was Saint Valentine, the saint who gave his name to the festival of lovers? Where do red hearts and roses fit in? Or do they? This volume is a lively introduction to a little known subject, the celebration of Saint

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Author blog: Anglo-Saxon Kingship and Political Power

Kathrin McCann introduces her new book, Anglo-Saxon Kingship and Political Power: Rex gratia Dei.  During the late 8th century it was said that England’s powerful ruler, King Offa of Mercia, sought to depose Pope Hadrian. He allegedly hoped to persuade his role model, Charlemagne of Francia, to replace the current pontiff with a Frankish ally. The pope,

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Out from the Dark: the horrors of early film

David Annwn Jones introduces his new book, Re-envisaging the First Age of Cinematic Horror, 1896-1934: Quanta of Fear. Currently, if you Google the name Nosferatu, you’ll receive well over six million hits – that is in relation to a silent film nearly a century old, and for long considered lost. The remarkable longevity of fear and

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Author blog: The Opposition to the Great War in Wales 1914-1918

Aled Eirug introduces his new book, The Opposition to the Great War in Wales 1914-1918. As we arrive at the hundredth anniversary of the end of the Great War, it is timely to consider how the war affected not only those 35,000 Welshmen and 780,000 British servicemen killed as a result of their war service,

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Author blog: The Algerian War in French/Algerian Writing

Jonathan Lewis introduces his new book, The Algerian War in French/Algerian Writing: Literary Sites of Memory. The Algerian War of Independence (1954–62), which led to the birth of the Algerian nation and marked the end of the French Empire, remains a divisive topic in contemporary France. Characterized as a ‘war without a name’ for decades after

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Author blog: Literary Illumination

Richard Leahy introduces his new book, Literary Illumination: The Evolution of Artificial Light in Nineteenth-Century Literature. It is easy to take artificial illumination for granted in our modern, twenty-first century culture of twenty-four hour supermarkets and brightly-lit roads and streets, yet this technology has only really shaped our lives for the past century and a half

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Author blog: South African Gothic

By Rebecca Duncan, author of South African Gothic: Anxiety and Creative Dissent in the Post-apartheid Imagination and Beyond. Emerging in the shadow of eighteenth-century Enlightenment, as the first shudders of industrialising change were becoming palpable in Britain, Gothic fictions have, over the two hundred and fifty years since the mode’s genesis, tended to proliferate at moments

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