Hook, Andrew 1932-
HOOK, Andrew 1932-
PERSONAL: Born December 21, 1932, in Wick, Caithness, Scotland; son of Wilfred Thomas (a post office radioman) and Jessie (Dunnett) Hook; married Judith Ann Hibberd (a lecturer in history), July 18, 1966 (died, 1984); children: Sarah York, Caspar Alexander, Nathaniel. Education: University of Edinburgh, M.A. (first class honors), 1954; University of Manchester, graduate study, 1956-57; Princeton University, Ph.D., 1960.
ADDRESSES: Home—5 Rosslyn Terrace, Glasgow, G12 9NB, Scotland. Offıce—Taylor Building, King's College, University of Aberdeen, Old Aberdeen, Scotland; The Andrew Hook Centre for American Studies, Department of History, University of Glasgow, 2 University Gardens, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland; fax: 0141 3305000. Agent—Elaine Greene, 31 Newington Green, London NI6 9PU, England. E-mail— [email protected]; [email protected]
CAREER: Duke University, Durham, NC, instructor in English, 1959-60; University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, assistant lecturer in English, 1961-63, lecturer in American literature, 1963-71; University of Aberdeen, Old Aberdeen, Scotland, senior lecturer in English, 1971—; University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Scotland, Bradley Professor of English Literature, 1979-98, Emeritus Bradley Professor of Literature, 1999—. Visiting professor, Princeton University, 1999-2000, College of Wooster, 2001-2002, and Dartmouth College. Founder of the Andrew Hook Centre for American Studies, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Scotland. Military service: British Army, Intelligence Corps, 1954-56.
MEMBER: British Association for American Studies, Association for Scottish Literary Studies, Eighteenth Century Scottish Studies Society (president, 1990—).
AWARDS, HONORS: Honorary professional research fellow, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Scotland.
(Editor) John Dos Passos: A Collection of Critical Essays, Prentice-Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1974.
Scotland and America: A Study of Cultural Relations, 1750-1835, Blackie & Son (Glasgow, Scotland), 1975.
American Literature in Context: 1865-1900, Routledge Kegan & Paul (London, England), 1984.
(Editor) The History of Scottish Literature: Volume 2, 1660-1800, Aberdeen University Press (Aberdeen, Scotland), 1987.
F. Scott Fitzgerald, E. Arnold (New York, NY), 1992.
(Editor, with Richard B. Sher) The Glasgow Enlightenment, Tuckwell Press (East Linton, East Lothian, Scotland), 1995.
From Goosecreek to Gandercleugh: Studies in Scottish-American Literary and Cultural History, Tuckwell Press (East Linton, East Lothian, Scotland), 1999.
(Editor, with Donald Mackenzie) Walter Scott, The Fair Maid of Perth, Edinburgh University Press (Edinburgh, Scotland), 1999.
F. Scott Fitzgerald: A Literary Life, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2002.
SIDELIGHTS: Historian Andrew Hook has examined the extensive literary and cultural connections between America and Scotland in numerous works. In From Goosecreek to Gandercleugh: Studies in Scottish-American Literary and Cultural History, Hook recounts how Scottish intellectual and social ideas helped shape the earliest development of the United States. Benjamin Franklin, for example, was deeply impressed with the range and type of intellectual activity he saw during a visit to Edinburgh during the Scottish Enlightenment. "Whether in moral philosophy, political economy, medicine, science, or aesthetics, it was Glasgow and Edinburgh that set the agenda for New York and Philadelphia," wrote Liam McIlvanney in Sunday Herald (Glasgow). In the book's dozen essays from thirty years of scholarship, Hook "explores the nature and extent of this Caledonian influence on the United States," McIlvanney said. "As a guide to the complex cultural relationships between Scotland and America, Hook is thoughtful, erudite, but above all accessible," McIlvanney concluded.
Scotland and America: A Study of Cultural Relations, 1750-1835 offers "a general survey of the full scope and duration of Scottish literary and intellectual influences on America," wrote Douglas Sloan in William and Mary Quarterly. "In providing just such an account, Andrew Hook has made a valuable contribution." Using a detailed study of contemporary American and Scottish magazines, pamphlets, journals, letters, travel literature, and other resources, Hook shows how American ideas toward Scotland evolved from practical notions of Scotland as a place of learning to a more romantic perception. Hook suggests, for example, that the successes and achievements of Scotland showed that other "cultural provinces" or colonies could rise to greatness equal to Europe's largest cosmopolitan areas. But even while transmitting this message of tremendous potential, "Scottish nationalism and romanticism were tame, conservative, undisturbing," Sloan remarked. "Americans could enjoy them wholeheartedly without feeling the need to make any fundamental changes in themselves." Stephen H. Blumm, writing in Eighteenth-Century Studies, stated that "Scotland and America is a learned, well-written study of a complex subject. Hook is enlightening when he analyzes major intellectual issues, and instructive when he treats the problems of cultural dissemination." Lewis P. Simpson, writing in American Literature, noted that the book is "based on a considerable amount of research," and concluded that "the treatment of these subjects is discriminating, balanced, and thoughtful, providing us in fact—so far as I am aware—with the first adequate description of the most significant period in Scottish-American cultural relations."
Hook's influence also brings reciprocal interest in American culture to Scotland through the Andrew Hook Centre for American Studies. Part of the University of Glasgow's Graduate School of Arts and Humanities, the Andrew Hook Centre offers conferences, lectures by prominent American literary figures, study retreats, and other literary and intellectual events. The centre also offers graduate degrees in American studies.
Hook is also a scholar of the life and works of literary great F. Scott Fitzgerald. In 1992's F. Scott Fitzgerald, Hook provides "an introduction to the oeuvre as a whole" and includes "many areas of discussion which introduce emphases in Fitzgerald criticism," commented David Seed in Review of English Studies. Hook's "elegant and concise study" argues that Fitzgerald's "studies of failure make sardonic comments on American society as a whole," but also demonstrate "an unresolved tension in Fitzgerald between necessary artistic detachment and social participation," Seed remarked.
With his 2002 volume, F. Scott Fitzgerald: A Literary Life, Hook takes a more biographical approach to the writer and explores the personal and professional influences behind Fitzgerald's writings. Hook's work "confines itself with rigorous academic propriety within the parameters of documented fact, and allows only cautious and disciplined speculation," observed Richard Whittington-Egan in Contemporary Review.
Fitzgerald, Hook relates, operated under a perpetual tug-of-war within himself, a desire to be a good person on the one hand and a good writer, despite the effects on himself and others, on the other. Charles C. Nash in Library Journal noted, "Although concise, this volume offers some astounding facts about Fitzgerald's life: his total earnings in 1939, for instance, amounted to $21,466.56," noted Nash, a sum equivalent to more than a quarter of a million dollars in 2002.
Hook told CA that "graduate study at Princeton [was] a crucial experience for me. I remain fascinated by the vitality of American life and culture."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
American Literature, March, 1976, Lewis P. Simpson, review of Scotland and America: A Study of Cultural Relations, 1750-1835, pp. 95-96; December, 1984, review of American Literature in Context: 1865-1900, p. 633.
British Book News, April, 1984, review of American Literature in Context, p. 241; spring, 1987, review of The History of Scottish Literature, Volume 2, 1660-1800, p. 605; October, 1987, review of The History of Scottish Literature, Volume 2, 1660-1800, p. 700.
Choice, April, 1977, review of Scotland and America, p. 186; May, 2003, B. Diemert, review of F. Scott Fitzgerald: A Literary Life.
Contemporary Review, April, 1984, review of American Literature in Context, p. 220; February, 2003, Richard Whittington-Egan, "The Fitzgeralds: The Beautiful and the Damned," review of F. Scott Fitzgerald: A Literary Life, pp. 118-119.
Eighteenth-Century Studies, spring, 1977, Stephen H. Blumm, review of Scotland and America, pp. 371-373.
Journal of American Studies, April, 1994, Randall Stevenson, review of F. Scott Fitzgerald, pp. 112-113.
Library Journal, August, 2002, Charles C. Nash, review of F. Scott Fitzgerald: A Literary Life, pp. 94-95.
Library Review, autumn, 1975, review of Scotland and America, p. 141.
Review of English Studies, February, 1996, David Seed, review of F. Scott Fitzgerald, pp. 115-117.
Sunday Herald (Glasgow, Scotland), July 25, 1999, Liam McIlvanney, review of From Goosecreek to Gandercleugh: Studies in Scottish-American Literary and Cultural History, p. 13.
Times Educational Supplement, April 13, 1984, review of American Literature in Context, p. 29.
Times Literary Supplement, July 2, 1976, review of Scotland and America: A Study of Cultural Relations, 1750-1835, p. 823; October 28, 1988, Alastair Fowler, "Caledonian Antisyzygy," review of The History of Scottish Literature: Volume 2, 1660-1800, p. 1198; February 19, 1993, review of F. Scott Fitzgerald, p. 14; August 13, 1999, Karl Miller, review of From Goosecreek to Gandercleugh, p. 12.
William and Mary Quarterly, January, 1977, Douglas Sloan, review of Scotland and America, pp. 142-143.*