To learn about the history of SEL Studies in English Literature 1500–1900, please see our Journal Timeline.
We were sorry to learn of the death of Barbara K. Lewalski on Friday 2 March. Barbara became a member of our advisory board in the summer of 1976, after first contributing to SEL by writing the Winter 1974 omnibus review essay “Recent Studies in the English Renaissance.” In her review, she noted especially the arrival of five groundbreaking books, including Raymond Williams’s The Country and the City and Ricardo Quinones’s The Renaissance Discovery of Time. Russell Fraser’s The Dark Ages and the Age of Gold, however, elicited some of her plain-speaking criticism: “The countering of inadequate stereotypes … by the creation of new ones is surely a futile exercise, unworthy of a scholar of Fraser’s distinction.” Besides offering us candid advice about SEL's place in the scholarly world and incisively evaluating many submissions, she contributed to our pages herself twice more: once, in 1992, weighing in on the controversy that arose about Milton’s ostensible authorship of the treatise De doctrina christiana, and again, in 2003, with the essay “Milton and Idolatry.” Her own essays and her reader reports all shared a characteristic directness and good sense. She was as generous in her praise of good essays as she was emphatic in her criticism of those essays she deemed unpublishable. Of one author, she declared, “His authority is unquestioned on this topic, his scholarship is unquestioned, and he writes well.” In summer 2013, she became an emeritus board member, and later that year served as the presiding judge for the Elizabeth Dietz Memorial award, administered by SEL, and given that year to Andrew Hadfield’s Edmund Spenser: A Life. We extend our deepest sympathy to her family and colleagues, and are deeply grateful for her generous labor on behalf of SEL.
—Logan D. Browning, Publisher and Executive Editor
SEL Wins the 2014 Voyager Award!
Message from the Publisher and Executive Editor Logan D. Browning:
On Thursday, January 8, 2015, SEL Studies in English Literature 1500–1900 received the 2014 Voyager Award from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals, recognizing excellence in any journal covering the period between 1500 and 1800. The award was presented to Logan Browning, publisher and executive editor of SEL, by CELJ president Sol Miguel-Prendes and immediate past president Alan Rauch. Judges’ praise for SEL was high: “In its four substantial issues per volume, which focus on the topics of The English Renaissance, Tudor and Stuart Drama, Restoration and the Eighteenth Century, and the Nineteenth Century, Studies in English Literature has been and remains one of the premier journals of early modern English Literature.” A second judge declared that “Each issue of SEL Studies in English Literature 1500–1900 reads as an achievement: nine full-length, engaging scholarly articles and a year’s worth of book reviews in one prodigious review essay certainly make a substantial contribution to the field. This journal exhibits an admirable clarity of purpose and an undeniable unity, and it distributes high-calibre, original research in English literature that reflects the rigorous intellectual curiosity of the broader scholarly community in the humanities.” Following the presentation, Logan Browning commented, “This award, because it comes from peers and from an organization as distinguished as CELJ, is especially meaningful. I am keenly aware that we would not be receiving the Voyager Award if not for the extraordinary vision of past editors Carroll Camden, Ed Doughtie, and, especially, Bob Patten; the generous and unwavering support of Rice University, especially the School of Humanities and its deans; and a whole host of hardworking assistant and associate editors, graduate assistants, board members, Johns Hopkins University Press staff members, loyal readers and subscribers, and generous benefactors. This is truly a shared honor.”
Logan D. Browning, Publisher and Executive Editor