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Alexander Regier of Rice University will deliver the 2015-2016 Ian Fletcher Memorial Lecture at Arizona State University.
In his talk, Regier discusses a number of little-known but critically important historical and theoretical connections between the English poet William Blake, the German thinker Johann Georg Hamann, and the congregation of the nonconformist Moravian church in London. The wider relevance of these connections is that all three form part of an important Anglo-German constellation of thinkers and writers that flourished well before the 1790s, supposedly the decade during which German influence onto eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British literary life began. The intellectual and textual exchange between Blake, Hamann and the Moravians actively points towards a need to reconfigure this literary history in the light of a multilingual study of the period.
Regier teaches eighteenth and nineteenth-century British literature, with a particular focus on the literary culture of the Enlightenment and Romanticism. His main research interests include aesthetics, the lyric, Anglo-German Romanticism, philosophy and poetics, theories of language, visual culture, irony, the grotesque, and sports studies.
He is the author of Fracture and Fragmentation in British Romanticism (Cambridge University Press, 2010), and the editor of Wordsworth’s Poetic Theory (Palgrave, 2010). Since 2011 he also serves as the editor of SEL (Studies in English Literature 1500-1900). His two co-edited special issues of SEL on “Exchanges and Temporalities in the Enlightenment, Romanticism, and Victorianism” are forthcoming (2016). He is also editing a special issue of Republics of Letters on “Sports” (Stanford, 2017).
Regier’s articles on rhetoric, Wordsworth, Georg Hamann, Durs Grünbein, Walter Benjamin, ruins, utopianism, contemporary poetry, and the aesthetics of sport have appeared in FMLS, European Romantic Review, Germanic Review, Ruins of Modernity (ed. Hell, Schönle), Tous azimuts, Durs Grünbein Today (ed. Young, Leeder), Oxford Handbook of European Romanticism (ed. Hamilton) and Wordsworth in Context (ed. Bennett), and Sport in History.
He has been the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships. Currently, he is working on a comparative monograph (Troubling Enlightenment) about Anglo-German relations during the Enlightenment and early Romanticism with particular attention to William Blake, Georg Hamann, and contemporary literary theory. Further projects include a book (Training Grace: Aesthetics, Writing, Sport) and an edited collection (Modern Sports Writing) on contemporary sports writing, as well as essays on Byron, Keats, visual culture, Gerhard Richter, and the sense of the “real” in Romanticism.
2014-2015: Pamela K. Gilbert [VIDEO] | April 14, 2015 @ 5:30 p.m., University Club, ASU Tempe campus. "'A Mild Erection of the Head': The Meaning of the Blush in Nineteenth-Century Britain"
2012-2013: Regenia Gagnier [VIDEO] | April 11, 2013 @ 6 p.m., Memorial Union La Paz Room, ASU Tempe campus. "World Literatures and What It Means to Be Human in the Niche of Nature, Culture, Technology"
2011-2012: Mary Poovey [VIDEO] | April 12, 2012 @ 6 p.m., University Club, ASU Tempe campus. "Risk, Uncertainty, and Data: Managing Risk in Early Twentieth-Century America"
2010-2011: John Kucich [VIDEO] | April 28, 2011 @ 6 p.m., University Club, ASU Tempe campus. "The Unfinished Historicist Project: In Praise of Suspicion"
2009-2010: No lecture
2007-2008: Catherine Gallagher | September 27, 2007 @ 6 p.m., University Club (UCLUB), ASU Tempe campus. "Jane Austen and the British Slave Trade: An Imaginary Conversation from Mansfield Park"
2006-2007: No lecture
2005-2006: Jerome McGann [VIDEO] | March 28, 2006 @ 7 p.m., University Club (UCLUB), ASU Tempe campus. "Information Technology and the Troubled Humanities"
2004-2005: Steven Mailloux | October 26, 2004 @ 6:30 p.m., Memorial Union Gold Room (MU 203), ASU Tempe campus. "Thinking with Rhetorical Figures: Racial and Disciplinary Identities in Late Nineteenth-Century America"
2001-2002: Wlad Godzich | October 24, 2001 @ 7 p.m., University Club, ASU Tempe campus. fletcherlecture2001.pdf
2000-2001: Mary Louise Pratt [VIDEO] | February 21, 2001. "Modernity and Globality or What Brought the Virgin of Zapopan to Los Angeles?"
1999-2000: Louise Rosenblatt | October 27, 1999 @ 7 p.m., University Club, ASU Tempe campus.
Ian Fletcher was a much-beloved Victorianist, a specialist in the literature of the 1890s, who spent the final six years of his career at Arizona State University during the 1980s. A remarkably productive scholar much appreciated for his edition of Lionel Johnson's poems, his much-quoted guide to Walter Pater, and his late study of Aubrey Beardsley published in 1987, Ian produced a host of books and articles that have been read and re-read many times in the past 40 years. In fact, his Collected Poems were published in 1998: ten years after his unfortunate death. This lectureship honors his memory and his importance in the field of Victorian Studies.
Associate Professor, Department of English