Epic effort to publish complete works of Brideshead Revisited author soon to launch

Posted by ap507 at Sep 11, 2017 09:52 AM |
Oxford University Press (OUP), in association with the University of Leicester, is publishing a full critical scholarly edition of The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh

Issued by the University of Leicester Press Office on 11 September 2017

Images of Professor Martin Stannard and Dr Barbara Cooke available here (credit Natalie Johnson/Barbara Cooke): https://www.dropbox.com/sh/pilbb78fer498qc/AACqBje46ttZDbXzfkrSn3zRa?dl=0

An epic effort to bring together for the first time The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh is being spearheaded by the author’s grandson in collaboration with the University of Leicester.

Oxford University Press (OUP), in association with the University of Leicester, is publishing a full critical scholarly edition of The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh. This brings together, for the first time, all of Waugh's extant writings and graphic art, both previously published and unpublished.

Alexander Waugh, Evelyn Waugh's grandson and the edition's General Editor, is overseeing the publication of 43 volumes. Waugh’s biographer, Professor Martin Stannard of the University of Leicester, and the late Prof David Bradshaw, of Worcester College, Oxford have been Co-Executive Editors of the first five volumes.

The Research Associate for this Leicester-based Arts & Humanities Research Council funded project has been Dr Barbara Cooke, now of Loughborough University.

No other collection of a British novelist’s work has been undertaken on a comparable scale. OUP signed up The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh (CWEW) in 2009, generously funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council which invested £822,481 over five years between 2013–18.

It will include novels, biographies, essays, letters, reportage, travel writings, reviews, diaries, poems, drawings, and designs, presented with comprehensive introductions and annotation. Every volume of fiction and non-fiction gives a full account of the text's manuscript development and textual variants, and each volume will guide the reader through its rich literary, social, and biographical context.

Professor Martin Stannard, Professor of Modern English Literature at the University of Leicester and Principal Investigator, said: “The edition will revolutionise Waugh studies, and influence twentieth-century literary and cultural studies more broadly. The expert editors of our new volumes will place Waugh’s works within their rich literary and historical context, enabling us to greatly expand our knowledge of the range and complexity of Waugh's thinking and artistic practice, linking this to the work of his contemporaries in Britain, America and Europe. No other edition of a British novelist has been undertaken on this scale.

“Our editors have been given permission by the Evelyn Waugh Estate to quote freely from the writer's published and unpublished materials, a privilege never before available to Waugh scholars.”

The first four volumes will be published this September, with a fifth later in the autumn, and the next set due to appear in 2019.The CWEW project has worked with the Humanities Research Center (Texas), the British, Brotherton and Bodleian Libraries, the Universities of Milan and Oxford, and the Oxford University Press, all of whom are Project Partners.

To celebrate the first five volumes of The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh, the Bodleian Library will be hosting an exhibition, curated by Barbara Cooke, of Evelyn Waugh’s Oxford, the 1920s city that witnessed Waugh’s drunken adolescence, inspired wartime classic Brideshead Revisited, and permeated his imagination throughout his life.                 

The City of Aquatint exhibition will run from the 26 August - 22 October 2017 in the Blackwell Hall, Weston Library, Oxford.

You can read an article about the project in The Oxford Times here:


You can find out more about the project here:




The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh - September 2017:

-          1903-1921: Precocious Waughs is the first of twelve volumes in the Personal Writings series, intercalating Waugh's early letters and school diary entries, many seen for the first time, with over 120 illustrations. Edited by Alexander Waugh and Alan Bell.

Pub. 14 September 2017/ £65 hb/ pgs 464/ ISBN: 9780199658961

-          A Little Learning, Waugh's only book-length autobiography (1964), offering unrivalled insight into his family and early years as well as the cultural and literary influences that shaped his view of the world. This brings all of Waugh's interviews together in one place for easy reference and publishes all extant fragments of ‘A Little Hope’, the sequel to A Little Learning, for the first time.                                                 Edited by John Howard Wilson and Barbara Cooke.

Pub. 14 September 2017/ £65 hb/ pgs 688 / ISBN:  9780198702917

-          Rossetti His Life and Works – Waugh’s first book, a biography of Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1928). This edition includes a detailed biographical appendix, provides information about all of the paintings and other works of art referred to, has a new index, and includes all of the original illustrations.                   Edited by Michael G. Brennan.

Pub. 14 September 2017/ £85 hb/ pgs 368 /ISBN: 9780199683574

-          Vile Bodies, Waugh’s distinctly English, modernist, ‘Jazz Age’ novel (1930). Drawing on previously unpublished material, this volume includes a critical introduction, full contextual notes, an extensive record of manuscript and textual variants, illustrations of the manuscript and dust jackets, and other related photographs. Edited by Martin Stannard.

Pub. 14 September 2017/ £65 hb/ pgs 432 / ISBN: 9780199683451

-          Volume One of Essays, Articles, and Reviews: 1922-1934 contains every known piece of journalism (as well as articles for student magazines, open letters etc.) written by Waugh during this period, many of which have never been reprinted. They create a vivid picture of English fashions, morals and literary culture in the interwar years as well as showcasing Waugh’s early, provocative journalistic talent.                Edited by Donat Gallagher.

Pub. November (estimate)/ £100 hb/ pgs 400/ ISBN: 9780199683444

Previously unpublished works

Before now, publication of Waugh’s private papers has been incomplete, diffuse, and unreliable.

When Waugh’s diaries were first published by Michael Davie in 1976, Waugh had been dead only ten years and many of the people mentioned were still alive. Thus many passages which are now printable had, then, to be excised for fear of libel.

Personal Writings will contain the bulk of the unpublished work (c. 85% of the extant complete letters have never been printed), including in Vol 1 many sketches omitted by Davie. Other previously unpublished works will include: correspondence with prominent figures such as Randolph and Winston Churchill, Ian and Ann Fleming, Graham Greene, Alec Guinness, Nancy Mitford, George Orwell, Muriel Spark, P.G. Wodehouse, and Henry Yorke to name but a few.  There are letters to and from Father D’Arcy – the Jesuit priest who received Waugh into the Catholic Church in 1930 – whose correspondence was withheld by the Jesuits for over 40 years, and letters to Teresa Jungman, to whom Waugh had unsuccessfully proposed, and who served as inspiration for some of his fiction. These letters, supposedly destroyed, were discovered by Alexander Waugh on a trip to Ireland in 2007, who has also unearthed around sixty transcribed letters to Mary Lygon, the originals of which were lost in a taxi.

Share this page: