Professor Shane Weller, from the Department of Comparative Literature, has been awarded a Leverhulme Visiting Professorship grant, which will make it possible for Professor Dirk Van Hulle from the Centre of Manuscript Genetics at the University of Antwerp to visit Kent in the Spring Term 2016.
The study of modern manuscripts – the research field of what is referred to as critique génétique or genetic criticism – has a direct link with the concept of European literature. When Victor Hugo donated his manuscripts to the French national library in Paris, he specified that this library would one day be ‘la bibliothèque des États-Unis d’Europe’ (‘the library of the United States of Europe’). The act of systematically keeping one’s manuscripts is a relatively recent phenomenon in literature, but it is by no means restricted to particular national literatures.
Winner of a European Research Council grant for a project on Samuel Beckett’s manuscripts, Professor Van Hulle has shown in seminal publications on manuscripts by European authors such as Proust, Thomas Mann, James Joyce, Samuel Beckett, and Charles Darwin that the study of modern manuscripts and writers’ libraries is an excellent method for examining the interrelationships between European literatures and cultures.
During his period as a Leverhulme Visiting Professor at the University of Kent, Professor Van Hulle will work with both established scholars and doctoral researchers to share the knowledge and expertise developed through his research projects, thus helping to build new collaborative partnerships with UK researchers.
For more information on Leverhulme Visiting Professors, please see the following page: www.leverhulme.ac.uk/funding/grant-schemes/visiting-professorships