On Saturday 8 September 2018, the CMC hosted a meeting for the scholarly editors associated with the Oxford University Press Edition of the writings of Wyndham Lewis.
The day was devoted to discussions about the complexities involved in establishing textually reliable scholarly editions of Lewis's work, focusing on issues to do with collation and annotation. Those in attendance also visited the Barber Institute to look at Lewis's 1940 portrait of his wife, Froanna.
Wyndham Lewis (1882-1957) was one of the twentieth century’s most innovative avant-garde painters, novelists, and theorists. His literary achievements were recognized in 2012 when Oxford University Press commissioned the first complete scholarly Edition, in 42 hard-copy volumes, of his writings, with scholarly introductions and explanatory appendices. The meeting hosted at the CMC was organized in order to forge new, and strengthen existing, collaborative working relationships between the scholars already working on the Edition. Attendees at the meeting shared their progress on individual volumes and explored solutions to textual problems, many of which are unique to the archival condition of Lewis’s manuscripts.
Those present at the meeting included: Leon Betsworth (London South Bank University), Ellie Collins (Oxford University Press), Paul Edwards (Bath Spa University), Andrew Frayn (Edinburgh Napier University), Andrzej Gąsiorek (University of Birmingham), Andrew Harrison (University of Nottingham), Chris Lewis (independent scholar), Alan Munton (University of Exeter), Nathan O'Donnell (Trinity College, Dublin), Michael Shallcross (University of York), Marianne Simon (University of Birmingham), and Nathan Waddell (University of Birmingham).
The meeting was an essential step towards producing the Edition, which will transform conventional understandings of literary history and re-situate Lewis at the centre of scholarly maps of twentieth-century avant-gardism. Those present were able to appraise each other’s work and progress, and to assess how their fellow editors have investigated textual evidence, annotated textual items, and constructed the edited texts upon which the Edition's finished, published volumes will be based. These discussions further consolidate Birmingham's longstanding reputation as an internationally recognized venue for the development of collaborative textual scholarship.