The Secret History in Literature, 1660–1820

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Rebecca Bullard, Rachel Carnell
Cambridge University Press, Mar 24, 2017 - Literary Criticism
Secret history, with its claim to expose secrets of state and the sexual intrigues of monarchs and ministers, alarmed and thrilled readers across Europe and America from the mid-seventeenth to the mid-nineteenth century. Scholars have recognised for some time the important position that the genre occupies within the literary and political culture of the Enlightenment. Of interest to students of British, French and American literature, as well as political and intellectual history, this new volume of essays demonstrates for the first time the extent of secret history's interaction with different literary traditions, including epic poetry, Restoration drama, periodicals, and slave narratives. It reveals secret history's impact on authors, readers, and the book trade in England, France, and America throughout the long eighteenth century. In doing so, it offers a case study for approaching questions of genre at moments when political and cultural shifts put strain on traditional generic categories.
 

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Contents

List of Figures
Acknowledgements
Paradise Lost as a Secret History
Secret History and SeventeenthCentury
Secret History and Restoration Drama
Secret History and Allegory
Secret History and Amatory Fiction
Secret History and Spy Narratives
Secret History and the Periodical
Secret History and Censorship
Secret History and Anecdote
Secret History in the Romantic Period
Secret History in PreRevolutionary France
Secret History in Late Eighteenth and Early
Republic
Secret History in the Early NineteenthCentury

Secret History Parody and Satire
Secret History and ItNarrative
Secret History Oriental Tale and Fairy Tale

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About the author (2017)

Rebecca Bullard is a Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Reading. She is the author of The Politics of Disclosure, 1674–1725: Secret History Narratives (2009) and editor of The Fair Penitent and The Ambitious Step-Mother for The Plays and Poems of Nicholas Rowe, Volume 1 (2016).

Rachel Carnell is a Professor of English at Cleveland State University, Ohio. Professor Carnell is the author of Partisan Politics, Narrative Realism and the Rise of the British Novel (2006), A Political Biography of Delarivier Manley (2008), and co-editor of the five-volume Selected Works of Delarivier Manley (with Ruth Herman, 2005). She has also had several research articles published on subjects such as secret history, Aphra Behn, Samuel Richardson and Eliza Haywood.

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