Hudspeth, Robert N. 1936-

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HUDSPETH, Robert N. 1936-

PERSONAL: Born November 21, 1936, in Sweetwater, TX; married 1959; children: three. Education: University of Texas, A.B., 1961; Syracuse University, A.M., 1963, Ph.D., 1967.

ADDRESSES: Office—Department of English, University of Redlands, Hall of Letters, Room 206, Redlands, CA 92373. E-mail[email protected]

CAREER: University of Washington, Seattle, assistant professor, 1967–71, associate professor of English, 1971–72; Pennsylvania State University, University Park, associate professor of English, 1972–; University of Redlands, Redlands, CA, professor of English.

MEMBER: Modern Language Association of America, American Studies Association.

WRITINGS:

(Editor, with Donald F. Sturtevant) The World of Language: A Reader in Linguistics, American Book Co., 1967.

Ellery Channing, Twayne (New York, NY), 1973.

(Editor) The Letters of Margaret Fuller, six volumes, Cornell University Press (Ithaca, NY), 1983–94.

(Editor) "My Heart Is a Large Kingdom": Selected Letters of Margaret Fuller, Cornell University Press (Ithaca, NY), 2001.

Also coeditor of Correspondence of Henry D. Thoreau. Contributor to literature journals.

SIDELIGHTS: Robert N. Hudspeth is the editor of The Letters of Margaret Fuller, a six-volume collection of the correspondence of one of America's earliest female literary critics. Fuller—born in 1810 and a contemporary of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Edgar Allan Poe, and Nathaniel Hawthorne—was well regarded for her incisive commentary on the literature of the early nineteenth century. James R. Mellow in the New York Times Book Review stated that Fuller's "literary criticism was as exacting as that of Poe, her more famous contemporary, but less tainted by poisonous personal motives."

Fuller lived an adventurous life, conducting classes in the arts for Boston women, writing the protofeminist tract Woman in the Nineteenth Century, participating in the communal community of Brook Farm, traveling to Europe where she met and married an Italian nobleman, and drowning in the wreck of the sailing ship Elizabeth with her husband and infant son. Her letters display the range of her interests and the many figures in the arts and literature with whom she was acquainted. Mellow described the publication of The Letters of Margaret Fuller as "something of a triumph, both as a scholarly service and as an act of restoration…. The Hudspeth volumes are a superb example of that patient recovery of the American past … which is altering our views of American history and American culture."

In 2001 Hudspeth edited "My Heart Is a Large Kingdom": Selected Letters of Margaret Fuller, in which he pulled from the six-volume collection those "items that illuminate the extraordinary dimensions of Fuller's restless mind and capacious heart," as the critic for Kirkus Reviews explained. Included are childhood letters, including one written to her father when she was eight years old, letters describing works of art or natural beauty she had seen, and letters about politics, travel, and her experiences while living in Europe. The Kirkus Reviews critic declared that "My Heart Is a Large Kingdom" is "a splendid selection of letters."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Kirkus Reviews, January 15, 2001, review of "My Heart Is a Large Kingdom": Selected Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 93.

Library Journal, January, 1995, Denise Sticha, review of The Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 112; February 1, 2001, Paolina Taglienti, review of "My Heart Is a Large Kingdom": Selected Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 96.

New Leader, September 19, 1983, Phyllis Cole, review of The Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 16.

New Yorker, July 18, 1983, review of The Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 98.

New York Review of Books, February 2, 1995, Millicent Bell, review of The Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 17.

New York Times Book Review, June 19, 1983, James R. Mellow, review of The Letters of Margaret Fuller, p. 1.