Adaptation and Digitization in the Long Eighteenth Century

John Boyne, ‘Comic Readings’, 1791

The Sterne Digital Library is a collaborative project between Cambridge and Northumbria Universities, Cambridge University Library, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and the Laurence Sterne Trust. This resource, hosted on Cambridge Digital Library, makes high-resolution images of Laurence Sterne’s works and of major examples of Sterneana, accompanied by scholarly introductions, freely accessible to a global audience. 

‘Adaptation and Digitization in the Long Eighteenth Century: Sterneana and Beyond’ brings together essays on major themes relating to this project, and is co-edited by its leaders, Helen Williams and Mary Newbould. It includes work on Sterne and Sterneana, but also on the significant phenomenon of adaptation in eighteenth-century literature and culture more widely, and on how digital media enable new modes of accessing, understanding, and interpreting this material.

This essay collection will be published as a journal special feature in ‘1650-1850: Ideas, Aesthetics, and Inquiries in the Early Modern Era’, issued by Bucknell University Press, in February 2022.

It promises an outstanding line-up of contributors and essays:

•    Paul Goring (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim), ‘The evolution of A Sentimental Journey, by a Lady in the Lady’s Magazine
•    Gabriella Hartvig (University of Pécs, Hungary), ‘“Gabriel Shandy looks me deeply in the eye”: early Sterne adaptations and the formation of the novel in Hungary’
•    Jakub Lipski (Kazimierz Wielki University, Poland), ‘Robinsonades and Adaptation’
•    Devoney Looser (Arizona State University), ‘Uncle Toby and Aunt Jane: The Reception Histories of Laurence Sterne and Jane Austen’
•    M-C. Newbould (University of Cambridge), ‘“AN-Othering” Sterne: Tracing the Absent-Presence of Anonymity in Sterneana through the Digital Trail’
•    Jack Orchard (Swansea University), ‘Ye Gods annihilate both space and time’: Tracing Reading Practices in Elizabeth Montagu’s Correspondence from EE to EMCO’
•    John Regan (Royal Holloway, University of London), ‘Lexical associations, digitization, and Sterne’s corpus’
•    Adam James Smith (York St John University), ‘“What’s an ‘age’, indeed?”: Orlando, Joseph Addison, and Virginia Woolf’s Critique of the Victorian Eighteenth Century’
•    Helen Williams (Northumbria University), ‘Sterne, Sterneana, and the Female Reader’

More details will follow in due course. In the meantime, please send any queries to Mary Newbould,