In this article we examine eighteen selected nonsense anthologies published in the UK since the 1920s, working on the assumption that they define, re-shape and visually reinterpret the genre for a general audience in parallel to scholarly approaches to nonsense. In the first part of our paper we look at the process of anthologising and its main functions, followed by an overview of key nonsense anthologies. In the second part, we inspect peritexts that influence the reception of these collections and, by extension, the perception of literary nonsense, looking specifically at book titles, cover designs, tables of contents, prefaces and postfaces. In doing so we hope to reveal the implied reader of the anthologies, comment on their coverage relative to the established Victorian canon and recognise the distinctive features of the genre, foregrounded by the anthologists’ editorial and aesthetic choices.
Agard, J. and Nichols, G. (2011). Pumpkin Grumpkin: Nonsense Poems from around the World. Ill. S. Kitamura. London: Walker Books.
Aris, E. and Collier, M. (1948). The Book of Delightful Nonsense. Oxford: Pen-in Hand.
Blake, Q. (ed.) (1996). The Puffin Book of Nonsense Verse. London: Penguin.
Cole, W. (ed.) (1968). Oh, What Nonsense! Ill. T. Ungerer. London: Methuen. (First published in the US in 1966).
Davies, J. (ed.) (1981). Everyman’s Book of Nonsense. London: Dent.
Foster, J. (ed.) (2002). My First Oxford Book of Nonsense Poems. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Green, R. L. (ed.) (1956). The Book of Nonsense, by Many Authors. Ill. C. Folkard. London: J. M. Dent & Sons.
Grigson, G. (ed.) (1979). The Faber Book of Nonsense Verse: With a Sprinkling of Nonsense Prose [hardcover]. London and Boston: Faber and Faber.
Grigson, G. (ed.) (1982). The Faber Book of Nonsense Verse: With a Sprinkling of Nonsense Prose [paperback]. London and Boston: Faber and Faber.
Guinness, L. (2004) The Everyman Book of Nonsense. London: Everyman’s Library.
Haughton, H. (ed.) (1988). The Chatto Book of Nonsense Poetry. London: Chatto and Windus.
Heyman, M. (ed.) (2008). The Tenth Rasa: An Anthology of Indian Nonsense. London: Penguin.
Jennings, P. (ed.) (1977). The Book of Nonsense. London: Raven Books. [Re-published by Book Club Associates, 1978]
Malcolm, N. (1997). The Origins of English Nonsense. London: HarperCollins, 1997.
Reed, L. (ed.) (1925). Nonsense Verses – An Anthology. Ill. H.M. Bateman. London: Jarrolds.
Ross, T. (ed.) (1989). The Pop-up Book of Nonsense Verse. London: Viking Kestrel.
Various (2013). The Book of Complete Nonsense. London: Vintage Children’s Classics.
Various (1996). Classic Nonsense Verse. London: Penguin.
Various (2000). A Treasury of Nonsense Verse. Bath: Parragon.
Appiah, K. A. (2005). The Ethics of Identity. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Archakis, A. & Tsakona, V. (2005). ‘Analyzing conversational data in GTVH terms: A new approach to the issue of identity construction via humour’. Humour 18 (1), pp. 41–68.
Attardo, S. (2008). ‘A primer for the linguistics of humour’, in Raskin, V. (ed.), The Primer of Humour Research, Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 101-155.
Brogan, T.V.F., Gutzwiller, K.J. and Greene, R. (2012). ‘Anthology’, in Green, R. et al.(ed.), The Princeton Encyclopaedia of Poetry and Poetics. Fourth Edition, Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, pp. 52-55.
Devi, G. and Rahman, N. (2014). Humour in Middle Eastern Cinema. Detroit: Wayne State University Press.
Di Leo, J.R. (2004). ‘Analysing Anthologies’ in Di Leo, J.R. (ed.), On Anthologies: Politics and Pedagogy, Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska, pp. 1-26.
Forceville, C. (2016). ‘Pictorial and Multimodal Metaphor’, in: Nina-Maria Klug, N.M and Stöckl, H. (ed.), Handbuch Sprache im multimodalen Kontext. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 241-260.
Genette, G. (1997). Paratexts. Thresholds of Interpretation. Trans. J.E. Lewin. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Heyman, M. (2003). ‘The Decline and Rise of Literary Nonsense’, in McGillis, R. (ed.), Children’s Literature and the Fin De Siècle. London: Praeger, 2003, pp. 13-21.
Heyman, M. (2008). ‘An Indian nonsense naissance’, in Heyman, M (ed.), The Tenth Rasa: An Anthology of Indian Nonsense, London: Penguin, pp. XIX-XLIII.
Lefevere, A. (1992). Translation, Rewriting and the Manipulation of Literary Fame. London and New York: Routledge.
Macksey, R. (1997). ‘Foreword’ in Genette, G., Paratexts. Thresholds of Interpretation. Trans. J.E. Lewin. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Sonzogni, M. (2011). Re-Covered Rose: A Case Study in Book Cover Design as Intersemiotic Translation. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins.
Sewell, E. (1952). The Field of Nonsense. London: Chatto & Windus.
Stewart, S. (1979). Nonsense: Aspects of Intertextuality in Folklore and Literature. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Styles, M. (1998). From the Garden to the Street: An Introduction to 300 Years of Poetry for Children. London: Cassell.
Tigges, W. (ed.) (1987). Explorations in the Field of Nonsense, Amsterdam: Rodopi.
Tigges, W. (1988). An Anatomy of Literary Nonsense. Amsterdam: Rodopi.
Townsend, J. R. (1987). Written for Children: An Outline of English-Language Children’s Literature. 3rd ed. Harmondsworth: Penguin.
Van Leeuven, H. (1987). ‘The liaison of visual and written nonsense’, in Tigges, W. (ed.), Explorations in the Field of Nonsense, Amsterdam: Rodopi, pp. 61-95.
Vevea, B. (2010). ‘School funds don’t match teacher layoffs’. September 23. Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 8, 2014 from http://www.jsonline.com/news/education/103590969.html.
Williams, J.J. (2004). ‘Anthology disdain’, in Di Leo, J.R. (ed.), On Anthologies: Politics and Pedagogy, Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska, pp. 207-221.