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Alan Downie of the University of London will deliver a talk entitled “’There were giants in the earth in those days’: Gulliver and the New Historicism” from 2:10-3 p.m. Wednesday, April 12, in room 201 of Lafayette College’s Pardee Hall.

Free and open to the public, the lecture will take place in an open session of the course The Age of Satire, taught by James Woolley, Lafayette’s Smith Professor of English. The event is sponsored by the English Department. For more information, contact Woolley, (610) 330-5246.

Downie will discuss the new historicist approaches to Gulliver’s Travels, published in 1726 by the Anglo-Irish prose satirist Jonathan Swift. In particular, he will cover Carole Fabricant’s essay on “History, Narrativity, and Swift’s Project to `Mend the World,'” which appears in Jonathan Swift: Gulliver’s Travels in the Case Studies in Contemporary Criticism series.

Downie is a professor of English and Pro-Warden at Goldsmiths College of the University of London. He is the author of numerous books and articles on English literature, including Robert Harley and the Press: Propaganda and Public Opinion in the Age of Swift (Cambridge University Press, 1979), Jonathan Swift, Political Writer (Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1984), and To Settle the Succession of the State: Literature and Politics, 1678-1750 (Macmillan, 1994). Most recently, he edited Constructing Christopher Marlowe (Cambridge, 2000).

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