British Women Poets and the Romantic Writing Community

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JHU Press, Feb 2, 2009 - Literary Criticism - 368 pages

This compelling study recovers the lost lives and poems of British women poets of the Romantic era. Stephen C. Behrendt reveals the range and diversity of their writings, offering new perspectives on the work of dozens of women whose poetry has long been ignored or marginalized in traditional literary history.

British Romanticism was once thought of as a cultural movement defined by a small group of male poets. This book grants women poets their proper place in the literary tradition of the time. In an approach ripe for classroom teaching, Behrendt first reviews the subject thematically, exploring the ways in which the poems addressed both public concerns and private experiences. He next examines the use of particular genres, including the sonnet and various other long and short forms. In the concluding chapters, Behrendt explores the impact of national identity, providing the first extensive study of Romantic-era poetry by women from Scotland and Ireland.

In recovering the lives and work of these women, Behrendt reveals their active participation within the rich cultural community of writers and readers throughout the British Isles. This study will be a key resource for scholars, teachers, and students in British literary studies, women’s studies, and cultural history.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
1 Women Writers Radical Rhetoric and the Public
37
2 Women Poets during the War Years
78
3 Women and the Sonnet
115
4 Experimenting with Genre
152
5 Scottish Women Poets
201
6 Irish Women Poets
244
Conclusion
291
Notes
303
Bibliography
321
Index
341
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About the author (2009)

Stephen C. Behrendt is the George Holmes Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Nebraska. He is the coeditor of Romanticism and Women Poets: Opening the Doors of Reception and Approaches to Teaching British Women Poets of the Romantic Period.

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