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Fanny Hill in Bombay: The Making and Unmaking of John Cleland Hardcover – March 23, 2012

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Editorial Reviews


Innovative, adventurous, and exciting. Gladfelder has given us a new and, for eighteenth-century studies, a newly significant and central John Cleland—a writer whose notoriety as author of the first pornographic novel in English has until now overshadowed a long, varied, and remarkable career as colonial administrator, projector, jailbird, bookseller's hack, alleged sodomite, translator, reviewer, philologist, and author of numerous original works beyond the Memoirs. All this arises from an exemplary—an unusual and immensely enabling—combination of painstaking archival and other historical research and analytic, expository flair. The scholarship is formidable throughout.

(Thomas Keymer, University of Toronto)

An impressively learned, scrupulously detailed study.

(Terry Eagleton London Review of Books)

Cleland's life story is a puzzle with many pieces still missing. But Gladfelder's careful, painstaking reconstructions have brought the fascinating picture into much clearer focus.


Anyone interested in the history of pornography or Cleland cannot afford to be without this study of the writer and his work.

(Julie Peakman Times Literary Supplement)

Lucid and engaging.

(Paul Baines Review of English Studies)

Fanny Hill in Bombay will prove to be of essential reading to scholars of many kinds: of the novel; print culture; social; legal and colonial history; and translation.

(Gregory Lynall Women's History Review)

About the Author

Hal Gladfelder is a senior lecturer of English and American studies at the University of Manchester, editor of John Cleland’s Memoirs of a Coxcomb, and author of Criminality and Narrative in Eighteenth-Century England: Beyond the Law, also published by Johns Hopkins.

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