I will never forget the day when Christmas came early – when Elinor Shaffer asked me over coffee, opposite Russell Square Tube Station in London, if I wanted to co-edit The Reception of William Blake in Europe with Morton D. Paley.
It took Morton and me seven years to complete the volumes of The Reception of William Blake in Europe, which is part of Shaffer’s longstanding series The Reception of British and Irish Authors in Europe. When Morton and I launched the volumes during a Symposium at Tate Britain, we were very impressed with the new materials that our contributors were sharing with us. The idea to do a special issue on Blake’s European reception for Blake/An Illustrated Quarterly was born.
Three years on, I am the proud editor of the first ever, special issue of Blake/An Illustrated Quarterly.
This special issue includes contributions by Cătălin Ghiță (Romanian Blake), Eliza Borkowska (Polish Blake), Luisa Calè (Italian Blake), Vera Serdechnaia (Russian Blake), Tanja Bakić (Serbian and Croatian Blake), Cristina Flores (Spanish Blake), Alcinda Pinheiro de Sousa, Cláudia Franco Souza, and João Carlos Callixto (Portuguese Blake), and Sibylle Erle (German Blake).
Blake in Europe: Case Studies shares discoveries, stories of influence, and compelling new readings of Blake’s significance to other cultures, including the first account of the Romanian radio play Biblia neagră a lui William Blake (William Blake’s Black Bible, 2016), Czesław Miłosz and his Ziemia Ulro (1977), translated as The Land of Ulro (1984), Corrado Costa’s visionary cartoon essay William Blake in Beulah (1977), the first known translation of “The Mental Traveller” by Nikolai Gumilyov (1918–21), Blake and the creative processes of Zdenka Pozaić, Simonida Rajčević, and Aleksandra M. Jovanić, Leopoldo María Panero’s dark, Blake-inspired poems and stories about Blake in Joseph Paul Hodin’s writings on Else and Ludwig Meidner.
You can read Blake in Europe: Case Studies at https://blakequarterly.org/index.php/blake (subscription required).