A literature of their own: British Women Novelists, from Brontë to Lessing

Front Cover
Virago, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 354 pages
7 Reviews
When first published in 1982, A LITERATURE OF THEIR OWN quickly set the stage for the creative explosion of feminist literary studies that transformed the field in the 1980s. Launching a major new area for literary investigation, the book uncovered the long but neglected tradition of women writers and the development of their fiction from the 1800s onwards. It includes assessments of famous writers such as the Brontės, George Eliot, Virginia Woolf, Margaret Drabble and Doris Lessing, but also presents critical appraisals of Mary Braddon, Rhoda Broughton and Sarah Grand - to name but a few of those prolific and successful Victorian novelists - once household names, now largely forgotten. This revised and expanded edition contains a new introductory chapter surveying the book's reception as well as a postscript chapter celebrating the legacy of feminism and feminist criticism in the efflorescence of contemporary British fiction by women.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bjmitch - LibraryThing

During a heat wave you would think I'd be reading something light and "beachy" but no, I've been reading this serious critical look at British women novelists from Bronte to Lessing from a feminist ... Read full review

Review: A Literature Of Their Own: British Women Novelists From Brontë To Lessing

User Review  - Amanda Mecke - Goodreads

Elaine Showalter pioneered women's studies in this book. If you love British novels and haven't read this book, you will discover wonderful writers -- and you will know how lucky we are today that they persevered. Read full review

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Contents

The Female Tradition
3
The Feminine Novelists and the Will to Write
31
The Double Critical Standard and the Feminine Novel
61
Copyright

11 other sections not shown

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About the author (2009)

In 1977, Showalter published A Literature of Their Own: British Women Novelists from Bronte to Lessing. It was one of the most influential works in feminist criticism, as it sought to establish a distinctive tradition for women writers. In later essays, Showalter helped to develop a clearly articulated feminist theory with two major branches: the special study of works by women and the study of all literature from a feminist perspective. In all of her recent writing, Showalter has sought to illuminate a "cultural model of female writing," distinguishable from male models and theories. Her role as editor bringing together key contemporary feminist criticism has been extremely influential on modern literary study.

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