Yuhki Takebayashi is a PhD student at Trinity College Dublin. His research looks at historical compilations of Oliver Goldsmith and he will be speaking about his work at the ECIS Annual Conference on 8-9 June 2017.
It is always a pleasure to visit and study materials in the British Library.
Favourite museum, gallery or heritage site:
I recently visited the Georgian House Museum in Bristol, which was a wonderful place to exercise one’s imagination and consider what life may have been like in the eighteenth century for an affluent merchant.
Most exciting place or time in the eighteenth-century:
I would love to have joined the company of hack writers dining with Tobias Smollett.
Best online resource:
ECCO: The range of English language materials available, and the usability of the interface is outstanding.
Best book of 18th century interest:
James Prior’s study on the life of Oliver Goldsmith has been an important source in deepening my interest in Goldsmith.
What eighteenth century figure would you most like to have a drink with?
Without a doubt, Oliver Goldsmith. Easy going, good natured, and ready to entertain, it is difficult to imagine how one could be displeased with his company.
What will you be talking about at the ECIS Annual Conference?
My research is concerned with the re-assessment and utilisation of the historical compilations of Oliver Goldsmith (1728-1774). In contrast to his canonical texts, these works have fallen into a state of neglect. By fitting them into the context of eighteenth-century history writing, I am re-examining them as valuable sources that may provide an additional layer to the conceptualisation of the author and his literary endeavours.
My paper for the 2017 ECIS conference will engage with the issue of Goldsmith’s Irishness, which has been the subject of continuing scholarly interest. Specifically, I will be doing so by examining his English histories. To this extent, contemporary Irish historians and antiquarians, including Charles O’Conor, Sylvester O’Halloran, and John Curry, will be surveyed to provide a point of reference. It will be shown that Goldsmith’s histories reveal disparate thoughts and attitudes toward Ireland and the Irish that were left in interpretive abeyance. I will propose that occupying such an ambivalent position was necessary to Goldsmith’s particular situation as an Irish writer in London.