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Abigail Williams

Abigail Williams
Academic Position:
CUF Lecturer and Tutorial Fellow
College:
St Peter's
Research Interests:
18th Century

Dr Abigail Williams has been a Fellow at St Peter's since 2001, shortly after she finished her doctorate, which was on politics and literature in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth century, and in particular, the development of Whig literary culture in that period. She has just completed an edition of Jonathan Swift’s Journal to Stella for Cambridge University Press’s multi-volume Collected Works of Jonathan Swift. It came out in early 2013, along with four additional articles relating to the edition. As part of her detective work on the edition, she has become increasingly interested in Swift’s obliterations on his letters, and in the longer term, she would like to work on a more general study of literary obliteration.

The other major research project that she has been working on is the Digital Miscellanies Index, a 3 year Leverhulme-funded research project which will create a database of the contents of the 1000 or so poetic miscellanies published during the course of the eighteenth century. The database will be completed and launched by September 2013.

She also speaks in secondary schools about the history of reading, and in particular, the history of reading out aloud in the home, and is part of Robert Peston's Speakers for Schools programme.

Recent Publications

  • 'The Literary Afterlives of Swift's Journal to Stella', in Reading Swift: Papers from the Sixth Munster Symposium, ed. Hermann Real (forthcoming 2012/13)
  • ed., Jonathan Swift, 'The Journal to Stella': Letters to Esther Johnson and Rebecca Dingley, 1710-1713 (forthcoming, CUP, 2012)
  • ed., Jonathan Swift, 'The Journal to Stella': Letters to Esther Johnson and Rebecca Dingley, 1710-1713 (forthcoming, CUP, 2012)
  • 'The difficulties of Swift's Journal to Stella', (Review of English Studies, advance access, 2011.
  • 'I hope to write as bad as ever': Swift's Journal to Stella and the intimacy of correspondence', Eighteenth-Century Life, 35 (2011), 102-118.
  • Poetry and the Creation of a Whig Literary Culture: 1680-1714. Published in hardback by OUP, April 2005 (paperback March 2009)
  • ‘The Politics of Providence in Dryden's Fables ', Translation and Literature, 17. (2008).
# Title Description Contributor
1 Drama and the Theatre, 1660-1760

In this introductory lecture, Abigail Williams investigates the staging of Restoration drama,...

Abigail Williams
2 Only Collect: An Introduction to the World of the Poetic Miscellany

Dr Abigail Williams, Director of the Digital Miscellanies Index, explains how these popular...

Abigail Williams
3 Jonathan Swift and the Art of Undressing

Dr Abigail Williams gives a talk on Jonathan Swift and the Art of Undressing

Abigail Williams
4 Swirls and secrets: the mysteries of Jonathan Swift's love letters

In Swift's letters to his adored Stella, we see an elaborate combination of language and...

Abigail Williams
# Title Description Contributor
1 Poetry and Tobacco

This podcast looks at the relationship between tobacco and poetic inspiration, through some...

Abigail Williams, Laurence Williams, John Clargo
2 The poetry of war

Explores the aesthetics and impact of war poetry in the early eighteenth century, focussing on...

Abigail Williams
3 Swirls and secrets: the mysteries of Jonathan Swift's love letters

In Swift's letters to his adored Stella, we see an elaborate combination of language and...

Abigail Williams
4 Jonathan Swift and the Art of Undressing

Dr Abigail Williams gives a talk on Jonathan Swift and the Art of Undressing

Abigail Williams
5 Only Collect: An Introduction to the World of the Poetic Miscellany

Dr Abigail Williams, Director of the Digital Miscellanies Index, explains how these popular...

Abigail Williams
# Essay Title Description Contributor
1 High and Low Culture

The literature, and particularly, the poetic satire of the late seventeenth and early eighteenth...

Abigail Williams
2 The World of Writing in the 18th Century

The world of writing in the eighteenth century was a world in flux, a time of transition when...

Abigail Williams
3 Who is Aphra Behn?

This essay is the first of four distilled from a lecture series on Aphra Behn given by...

Abigail Williams, Kate O'Connor
4 Aphra Behn and the Restoration Theatre

This essay is the second of four distilled from a lecture series on Aphra Behn given by Dr....

Abigail Williams, Kate O'Connor
5 Aphra Behn and Political Culture

This essay is the third of four distilled from a lecture series on Aphra Behn given by Dr....

Abigail Williams, Kate O'Connor
6 Aphra Behn and Poetic Culture

This essay is the last of four distilled from a lecture series on Aphra Behn given by Dr....

Abigail Williams, Kate O'Connor
7 Jonathan Swift and 'A Tale of a Tub'

This essay is the first of two distilled from a lecture series on Jonathan Swift given by Dr...

Abigail Williams, Kate O'Connor
8 Jonathan Swift and 'Gulliver's Travels'

This essay is the second of two distilled from a lecture series on Jonathan Swift given by...

Abigail Williams, Kate O'Connor