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Daniel Cook

Daniel Cook BA (hons) MA PhD

Type of addressPostal address
CountryUnited Kingdom

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Dr Daniel Cook specializes in 18th- and 19th-century English, Scottish, and Irish literature, as well as book history and literary property more broadly. Before joining Dundee he was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US, as well as a Donald and Mary Hyde Fellow at Harvard. He held a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellowship at the University of Bristol and, before that, an AHRC Research Fellowship on the Cambridge Edition of the Works of Jonathan Swift. Daniel completed his PhD at the University of Cambridge with a thesis on the reception history of 'the marvellous boy' Thomas Chatterton. This forms the basis of his first monograph, Thomas Chatterton and Neglected Genius, 1760-1830. He has also published articles on a range of topics, from Jonathan Swift to Walter Scott, in Philological Quarterly, Review of English Studies, Eighteenth-Century Ireland, The Library, and other leading journals and essay collections.

Dr Cook serves on the executive boards of the Universities Committee for Scottish Literature, the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, the British Association for Romantic Studies, and The Thomas Chatterton Society. For Romantic Textualities he writes a resident blog series, "Teaching Romanticism", and for Criticks he is the Reviews Editor for Media and New Media. At the University of Dundee, he is an Associate Director of the Centre for Scottish Culture.


My research examines the various ways in which authors, editors and readers shape literary afterlives or legacies in print. This work began with my first monograph, Thomas Chatterton and Neglected Genius, 1760-1830, in which I trace the publication and reception history of the works of Chatterton, a teenage poet and forger whose works were widely read, imitated and discussed in the long eighteenth century.

More recently, I have focused on the life and works of Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver’s Travels, countless English and Irish political pamphlets, prose satires, and poems in all manner of styles and genres. I have also written about Wordsworth’s allusions to Chatterton and others, the literary ballad tradition, “beauties” collections, originality and genius, hack writing, and other topics.

As a book historian my research takes place against the backdrop of significant change in literary copyright in England, Scotland and Ireland and its impact on definitions of authorship in the burgeoning print culture of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Rather than stifling imitation and appropriation, I seek to argue, shifting attitudes towards literary property gave rise to audaciously creative acts of plagiarism, pilfering and rewriting. My recent work in this area can be found in my contribution to a co-edited essay collection (with Nicholas Seager), The Afterlives of Eighteenth-Century Fiction, and elsewhere. Reaching across different subjects and approaches, my research always circles back to two fundamental questions. What is authorship? Who owns literature?

My broad research interests include:

  • English, Scottish and Irish literature before 1900;
  • Book history, reception history, and literary property;
  • Authorship, forgery, adaptation and appropriation;
  • Autobiography, biography, and literary afterlives;
  • Authors of specific interest include Thomas Chatterton, Jonathan Swift, Alexander Pope, Henry and Sarah Fielding, Jane Austen, Walter Scott, Robert Burns, William Wordsworth, and Lord Byron.


Daniel Cook teaches the following modules.



In 2014, Daniel won the Creative Teaching: Recognising Innovative Practice Award at the College Teaching and Good Practice Awards, University of Dundee.

He also convenes the MLitt in English Studies and so would be delighted to hear from any prospective students.

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