National Culture Wars: Samuel Johnson, William Shaw, and the Ossian Controversy

Document Type

Grant Proposal

Date Accepted

Summer 2004

Project Description/Abstract

A Summer 2004 Grant of $3,000.00 would fund a month (Summer Session II) of research at home and at the Beineke Library of Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, to the specific end of completing Chapters 6 and 7 in my book, National Culture Wars in Imperial Great Britain: Johnson, Ossian, and the Irish Literary Renaissance, for Penn State University Press. The focus of my research will be transcribing William Shaw’s manuscript correspondence, which I have located at Yale, and then reading dozens of recent books and articles aimed at rehabilitating the dubious reputation of phony Ossian poetry concocted by James Macpherson. A full bibliography of these readings appears below, after a synopsis of my book. Your grant will help me to expose a major literary forgery and to correct misleading modern scholarship about it.

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