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The introduction outlines the broad aim of the book: to draw attention to the debates about matter’s agency and force taking place within the literature of the Romantic, Victorian and Modern periods that are at risk of being overwritten by the claim to newness in the recent turn to materiality. By familiarising the reader with some key terms and concepts in new materialist theory that align with the purposes of the collection, the introduction is also intended to provide a concise and helpful overview to the trajectory of new materialist thought. The introduction goes on to provide chapter summaries, drawing connections between the individual chapters that indicate where literary studies and materialisms are finding their most critically productive junctures.