Het net verschenen boek van Ann Rigney The Afterlives of Walter Scott - Memory on the Move kreeg een prachtige, uitgebreide recensie in het toonaangevende Times Literary Supplement, geschreven door John Sutherland.
Sir Walter Scott
Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832) was once a household name, but is now largely forgotten. Rigney’s book explores how Scott's work became an all-pervasive point of reference for cultural memory and collective identity in the nineteenth century, and why it no longer has this role.
Ann Rigney breaks new ground in memory studies and the study of literary reception by examining the dynamics of cultural memory and the 'social life' of literary texts across several generations and multiple media. She pays attention to the remediation of the Waverley novels as they travelled into painting, the theatre, and material culture, as well as to the role of 'Scott' as a memory site in the public sphere for a century after his death.
Review Times Literary Supplement
“… But most useful for those reading her book are the instruments she uses – and how one can borrow and make use of them oneself. Particularly eye-opening (for me, at least) is the wholly persuasive last chapter (“How Long was Immortality?”) and her argument that by historicizing the present – where we are – Scott opened the way for modernism and set up the constantly renovating processes (“make it new”, as Pound instructed) which ensured his (Scott’s) own inevitable eclipse. Scott’s genius was to dig his own grave – but, mysteriously and manifestly, as Rigney shows, live on”. Read more
John Sutherland is Lord Northcliffe Professor Emeritus at University College London. His Life of Scott: A critical biography was published in 1995, while his Lives of the Novelists appeared last year.