Education: Oxford University, B.A., 1999; received Ph.D., 2003.
Writer and independent scholar.
The Literary Protégées of the Lake Poets, Ashgate (Burlington, VT), 2006.
Dennis Low's first book is The Literary Protégées of the Lake Poets, a volume in the "Nineteenth Century Series" published by Ashgate. Low, an independent scholar who graduated from Oxford University, explores a little-known facet of the Romantic movement as it existed in England's Lake District at the turn of the nineteenth century. He explores how the era's most famous poets (William Wordsworth, Robert Southey, and Samuel Taylor Coleridge) mentored a number of talented female poets in their familial and social circles, helping them to become published and gain recognition for their work in a way that bucked the traditional gender norms of the time. In particular, Low examines four women poets: Caroline Bowles, Southey's second wife; Maria Gowen Brooks, an American who struck up a transoceanic correspondence with Southey and ultimately enjoyed a vacation at his home; Sara Coleridge, the only daughter of Samuel Taylor Coleridge; and Maria Jane Jewsbury, a self-made writer and admirer of Wordsworth, who ultimately became her champion.
Low is particularly interested in Southey's contribution to the women's careers. Southey believed their fresh viewpoints could invigorate the world of poetry, which he felt was suffering a period of stagnation and decline. The book relies heavily on Low's research of unpublished letters and manuscripts, both in Great Britain and the United States.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Review of English Studies, June, 2007, Rosemary March, review of The Literary Protégées of the Lake Poets, p. 413.
Times Literary Supplement, January 19, 2007, Nora Crook, review of The Literary Protégées of the Lake Poets, p. 28.