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Dr Jennifer BattBA (Oxon), MST (Oxon), DPhil (Oxon)


Jennifer Batt

Dr Jennifer BattBA (Oxon), MST (Oxon), DPhil (Oxon)


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Research interests

Broadly speaking, my research interests lie in eighteenth-century literature, book history and reception history, and digital humanities. I'm particularly interested in the publication and reception history of eighteenth-century poetry, and in exploring how poetic culture was constructed across a range of media, including newspapers, magazines, miscellanies and pamphlets. I'm also interested in investigating how that poetic culture reached across social and geographical boundaries, and especially in tracing how it stretched beyond metropolitan or polite limits to include men and women in the provinces and of all social classes.

Before coming to Bristol, I was project manager of the Digital Miscellanies Index. Based at the University of Oxford and funded by the Leverhulme Trust, this project has created a freely available online database that will enable the writing of a new, data-driven reception history of eighteenth-century poetry. The database was launched in beta in September 2013 and contains records relating to over 1,400 miscellany volumes, 80,000 poems, and several thousand poets, printers and booksellers. With Abigail Williams (the project's PI) I am co-editing a special issue of Eighteenth-Century Life which showcases new research made possible by the DMI. In particular the DMI has prompted me to think more about authorship and anonymity in eighteenth century poetry, and I'm at work on an article exploring this.

I'm also currently completing a book on the 'thresher poet' Stephen Duck, the most famous/infamous labouring class poet of the eighteenth century.

My next project will see a shift from verse in miscellanies to verse in magazines and newspapers, an interest that I've begun to sketch out in my chapter on 'Poems in Magazines' in A Handbook of British Poetry 1660-1800 ed. Jack Lynch (Oxford: Oxford UP, forthcoming 2014).



I currently teach on the following units:

Approaches to Shakespeare (Y1)
Critical Issues (Y1)
Eighteenth Century Women's Writing (Y2)
Writing the Working Classes (Y2)
Literature 3: 1700-1830 (Y3)

MA in English Literature (Introduction to Literary Research)

As part of the 'Great Writers Inspire' project based at the University of Oxford I recorded two short lectures on labouring-class writing: I talk about Stephen Duck here, and Mary Leapor here.

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Postal address:
3/5 Woodland Road
United Kingdom