Robin Dix papers
Related material - here


Reference code: GB-0033-RDX
Title: Robin Dix papers
Dates of creation: 1974-2005
Extent: 2 metres
Held by: Durham University Library, Archives and Special Collections
Origination: Robin Dix
Language: English


Robin Dix (1956-2007), was educated at Wycliffe School, Stonehouse, Glos 1966-1974, and then undertook undergraduate and doctoral degrees at New College Oxford 1975-1982. He was a lecturer in English at Bedford College, London, before moving to the English Studies department of Durham University in 1991 where he was a specialist in eighteenth-century writing and thought, particularly the writings of Mark Akenside, the Newcastle physician and poet. The department established an annual memorial lecture to commemorate his life and work after his death in 2007.


The academic papers of Robin Dix, English lecturer, comprising his notes and essays as an Oxford undergraduate, his teaching papers as an academic including lectures and reading lists, and especially his research papers into and publications on the eighteenth century Newcastle-born English poet Mark Akenside (1721-1770), author principally of The Pleasures of the Imagination, including correspondence with publishers, fellow academics and librarians/archivists.

Accession details

Transferred from the English Studies department of Durham University in April 2018, Acc No Misc.2017/18:78.

Previous custodial history

Remained in the department at 77 Hallgarth St, Durham, since his death.

Conditions of access

Open for consultation.

Copyright and copying

Permission to make any published use of material from the collection must be sought in advance from the Sub-Librarian, Special Collections (e-mail and, where appropriate, from the copyright owner. The Library will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material


Arranged into:
A Student papers
B Teaching papers and lectures
C Research papers and publications
D Administration and Correspondence


Weeded of duplicate material


None expected

Related material - here

Robin Dix Akenside Collection (AKE) Books by and about Mark Akenside collected by Robin Dix


Robin Dix ed, The poetical works of Mark Akenside (Madison, NJ, 1996)
Robin Dix ed, Mark Akenside: a reassessment (Madison, NJ, 2000)
Robin Dix, The literary career of Mark Akenside, including an edition of his non-medical prose (Madison, NJ, 2006).


Student Papers
Reference: RDX A
RDX A1-4   [1975 - 1978]
Robin Dix Oxford University undergraduate notes and essays:
1. Middle English
2. Elizabethans and Shakespeare
3. T.S. Eliot, Yeats, with some marked essays
4. Wordsworth, Coleridge
4 paper files
RDX A5   [?1978]
“Middle English Macaronic Lyrics: A Study”, [Robin Dix Oxford University undergraduate dissertation].
Paper file
RDX A6   1974 - 1978
Oxford University Scholarship and Entrance English exam papers (November 1974), and English Language and Literature Honour School exam papers 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977 and 1978.
Paper file
RDX A7   1978 - [1980]
Note book of “works consulted for B.Litt” , in alphabetical order with Bodleian Library references.
Paper book
RDX A8   [?early 1980s]
Bibliography of works and topics for his thesis on Akenside, including notes on books, a list of Akenside's acquaintances and notes from books on topics such as background, continuity of tradition, miscellaneous, and philosophy.
File of 5 x 8" index cards
Teaching and Lectures
Reference: RDX B
RDX B1   [1990s]
Robin Dix lectures on Hardy's novels (lecture 2 beginning: “On my way into Durham, this morning, as I was sitting in the usual traffic jam, I found myself composing a limerick. It went something like this: A general, out conquering more land for his nation, Told the press, in a carefully-worded oration: 'When I fire off this flak, It won't be an attack, But - pre-emptive retaliation.'”) With a reading list, synopses, and extended passages.
Paper file
RDX B2   [1980s x 1990s]
Robin Dix lecture on The Novel, beginning “I'm glad that the course organizer has left, because I have a confession to make, which I fear she'd find rather shocking. I actually resent the novel.”, with a synopsis and checklist of major 18th century essayists/novelists.
Paper file
RDX B3   [1980s x 1990s]
Teaching notes on Jane Austen and Charles Dickens ( Bleak House)
Paper file
RDX B4   [1980s x 1990s]
Robin Dix lectures, noted as “discarded material from Restoration Drama I and II”.
Paper file
RDX B5-7   [later 1970s - later 1990s]
Robin Dix reading lists and essay questions for various courses at his various institutions.
3 paper files
RDX B8   1997
English department [library] standing orders.
Paper file
RDX B9   [c.1990]
Alphabetical list of English works of literature, with ISBNs.
File of 3 x 5" index cards
Research and Publications
Reference: RDX C
RDX C1   1987
Notes, drafts and letters from David Fleeman re “A British Phillipic”.
Paper file
RDX C2   [1980s x 1990s]
Notes and drafts for Dix's work on Akenside.
Paper file
RDX C3   [c.1990]
Allusion and Imitation Poems printouts.
Paper file
RDX C4   [1980s x 1990s]
Notes on Akenside.
Paper file
RDX C5   1987 - 1988
Computer searches for Akenside material in the British Library, with a British Library Computer Search Service guide (October 1987).
Paper file
RDX C6-11   [1990s]
Notes and drafts of Akenside material.
6 boxes of 3.5" floppy disks
RDX C12   [1980s x 1990s]
Photocopies of Akenside texts.
Paper file
RDX C13   [1980s x 1990s]
Photocopies of Akenside texts at Amherst College, Massachusetts.
Paper file
RDX C14   [1980s x 1990s]
Photocopies of critical articles on Akenside, with some occasional correspondence.
Paper file
RDX C15-17   [1980s x 1990s]
Robin Dix's collation notes on Akenside's texts:
15. The Pleasures of Imagination
16. Odes
17. Hymn to the Naiaids etc
Paper file
RDX C18   [1980s x 1990s]
Annotated drafts of the appendices, bibliography, and index of The Poetical Works ...
Paper file
RDX C19-36   [c.1996]
The Poetical Works of Mark Akenside, published by Associated University Presses, typescript [final] draft, with pagination.
17 paper files
RDX C37   [2000]
Mark Akenside: a Reassessment, published by Associated University Presses, camera ready copy, with annotations.
Paper file
RDX C38   1996 - 1997
Mark Akenside: a Reassessment, draft bibliography.
Paper file
RDX C39   1996 - 1998
Mark Akenside: a Reassessment, correspondence with contributors, including Howard Weinbrot, Kirk Fabel, Geoffrey Hartman, Nicholas Reid, James Engell, Mark Dowling, Richard Wendorf, Claude Rawson, Anne Williams, Dustin Griffin, Harriet Jump, Anderson Silber, including the initial cultivation of interest in the volume, and then feedback on contributions; also a critical bilbiography of all relevant publications on Akenside and contemporaries.
Paper file
RDX C40   1982
Article: “Sublime Repose in Eighteenth-Century Aesthetic Theory”, draft and correspondence with The British Journal of Aesthetics.
Paper file
RDX C41   1996 - 1999
Article: “Pleasures of Speculation” (British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies), correspondence, especially with Howard Weinbrot, and offprints.
Paper file
RDX C42   1999
New Dictionary of National Biography articles on Mark Akenside and John Gilbert Cooper, correspondence, proofs and submissions.
Paper file
RDX C43   1999 - 2002
Article on “Ferguson's Aesthetics”, drafts, correspondence with Vincenzo Merolle for The European Journal.
Paper file & 4 x 3.5" floppy disks
RDX C44   2002 - 2004
Article “Eighteenth-Century Developments in the Patronage System: The Case of John Gilbert Cooper”, draft, with correspondence with Prof Peter Fenves, editor of Eighteenth_Century Studies.
Paper file
RDX C45   2004
Article “Richard Dawes and the Art of Pre-Emptive Self-Defence: the Figure of 'Momion' in Akenside's The Pleasures of Imagination”, draft and letter to Archaeologia Aeliana.
Paper file
RDX C46   2004
Article “Mark Akenside”, draft, contract, letter and contributor's manual for Encyclopedia of British Literature.
Paper file
RDX C47   [1980s x 1990s]
Notes on David Fordyce, ?for a Nineteenth Century Contexts article.
Paper file
RDX C48   1983 - 2005
Offprints and photocopies of articles, papers and contributions to journals by Dix including Notes and Queries, British Journal of Aesthetics, The Library, The Age of Johnson, Archaeologia Aeliana, Durham University Journal and English Language Notes.
Paper file
RDX C49   [1983]
Trudi Darby, “A Critcal, Old-Spelling Edition of A New Wonder, a Woman Never Vext, by William Rowley”, King's College London PhD thesis.
Paper file
Administration and Correspondence
Reference: RDX D
RDX D1   2000 - 2003
Appraisal, including feedback forms from students, applications for promotion, his membership of the Institute for Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, and correspondence with the Arts and Humanities Research Board.
Paper file
Closed until 2029 under DPA as information supplied in confidence.
RDX D2   1995 - 1998
ABES (annotated Bibliography for English Studies) correspondence with Dix about his contributions, with some statements of editorial policy etc, and some correspondence with EBRES (European Bibliography of Resources for English Studies), with also lists of periodicals searched and some British Library Boston Spa order slips.
Paper file
RDX D3   1991 - 2000
Correspondence with Associated University Presses re the publication of his edition of Akenside including some proofs and flyers.
Paper file
RDX D4   1996 - 1997
Correspondence with Steve Clark of the University of London.
Paper file
RDX D5   1986 - 1996
Correspondence with John Creaser of Royal Holloway College University of London, including an article by Robin Dix “To See Ourselves as Others See Us” reflecting on his experiences in finance and administration outside academia.
Paper file
RDX D6   1996 - 1997
Correspondence with John Dunkley, editor of the British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies with a copy of an article "Radical Insincerity" in Edward Young's "Night Thoughts".
Paper file
RDX D7   1990 - 1995
Correspondence with David Fairer of the University of Leeds.
Paper file
RDX D8   1985 - 1994
Correspondence with J.D. (David) Fleeman of Pembroke College Oxford, including a letter presenting a copy of Dix's Akenside edition to Pembroke College Library in Fleeman's memory in 1996.
Paper file
RDX D9   1996 - 1997
Correspondence with Dorothy Hartley of Sovereign Education re a lecture on Arthur Miller, with a text of the lecture.
Paper file
RDX D10   1984 - 1998
Correspondence with Harriet Jump.
Paper file
RDX D11   2000
Correspondence with Sandro Jung and a draft copy of his article “Poetic Achievement in the Poems of Mark Akenside and William Shenstone”.
Paper file
RDX D12   1988 - 1993
Correspondence with Hilton Kelliher of the British Library.
Paper file
RDX D13   1987 - 1996
Correspondence with John Lancaster of Amherst College Library Special Collections, Massachusetts with some drafts of texts on Akenside.
Paper file
RDX D14   1996 - 1997
Correspondence with Hilary Laurie of Everyman Paperbacks about a possible edition of poems by William Collins.
Paper file
RDX D15   1993 - 2000
Correspondence with the Royal College of Physicians.
Paper file
RDX D16   1990 - 1996
Correspondence with Marcus Walsh of the University of Birmingham.
Paper file
RDX D17   1997 - 2001
Correspondence with Howard Weinbrot of the University of Wisconsin-Madison about reviews.
Paper file
RDX D18   1992 - 1999
Correspondence with Karina Williamson of the University of Edinburgh.
Paper file
RDX D19   1990 - 2002
Correspondence of Robin Dix about research, including with John Goodenough, Dustin Griffin, Roger Hawkins, Michael Bird Saenger (about pieces on Macbeth and Coriolanus), and Pat Southern, including possible portraits of Akenside, lectures, a review of Kirk Fabel's Akenside article, and research in archives.
Paper file
RDX D20   1986 - 2000
Correspondence with various about Akenside, trying to find letters and publication permissions re them.
Paper file