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'Mystery editor' of Robert Burns's early work

Date: 02/07/2014

Robert Burns has the undeniable status as a cultural icon but, in academic terms, Burns' cultural stature has overshadowed his achievements as a creative artist- to the extent that the writer has not been taught in universities. However, a team at the University of Glasgow’s Centre for Robert Burns Studies has started work on the world's first complete scholarly edition of Burns's works.

Professor Nigel Leask, a member of the team on the AHRC-funded project 'Editing Robert Burns for the 21st Century', has today announced his finding that Scotland's national bard used a mystery figure to help him edit all his early work. These findings are to be discussed at the inaugural World Congress of Scottish Literatures (WCSL) organised by Glasgow University.

To read more on this story, see the BBC website's article 'Robert Burns 'used mystery editor' on his early work'. 'Robert Burns, a victim of his own popularity?', a feature on the AHRC website, provides further information on the background of the project.

Notes to editors

  • For further press information please contact: Danielle Moore-Chick (AHRC) on 01793 41 6021 or d.moore-chick@ahrc.ac.uk

  • The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funds world-class, independent researchers in a wide range of subjects: ancient history, modern dance, archaeology, digital content, philosophy, English literature, design, the creative and performing arts, and much more. This financial year the AHRC will spend approximately £98m to fund research and postgraduate training in collaboration with a number of partners. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits but also contributes to the economic success of the UK. www.ahrc.ac.uk


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