Minerva's Gothics: The Politics and Poetics of Romantic Exchange, 1780-1820

Minerva's Gothics: The Politics and Poetics of Romantic Exchange, 1780-1820

by Elizabeth A. Neiman


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Between 1790 and 1820, William Lane’s Minerva Press published an unprecedented number of new novels by female authors. Reading these novels for their shared popular conventions demonstrates that circulating-library novelists collectively recirculate, engage and modify commonplaces about women’s nature, the social order and, most importantly, the very same Romantic redefinitions of literature that still render their novels not worth reading. Elizabeth Neiman’s analysis shows that Minerva novelists write and authorize a collaborative authorial model, and that this model reverberates in Romantic poetics—most notably, Percy Shelley’s portrayal of the idealized poet in A Defence of Poetry.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781786833679
Publisher: University of Wales Press
Publication date: 05/15/2019
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 842,418
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.20(d)

Table of Contents

List of Tables ix

List of Figures x

Acknowledgemets xi

Preface xv

1 Remapping Minerva's Influence on the Novel Market 1

Section 1 Feminist Discernment and Minerva's Production of Romantic Fantasy

Section Overview 49

2 Julies and St Preuxes: Networking 'Lady' Authors, 1785-1789 53

3 Wollstonecraft and the Revolutionary Feminist Novel: At a Crossroads with Wordsworth 73

Section 2 The Revolution Debate in Britain: Minerva and the Politics of Feeling

Section Overview 101

4 Providential Adaptations to the Romantic Fantasy, 1790-1794 104

5 Godwin and Providential Feeling in Things As They Are: Meeting Readers Where They Are 128

6 Providential Feeling at Minerva's Zenith: What the Commoner Teaches the Nobleman 147

Section 3 The Forgotten Poetics of Romantic Exchange: Gothic Habits of Mind

Section Overview 173

7 Minerva's Continued Influence: The Poet as Nightingale in Shelley's 1810 Gothics 177

8 Reinstating Romantic Fantasy in Minerva's 'Late' Novels: Romanticism and 'Gothic' Habits of Mind 199

Afterword 225

Notes 231

Bibliography 261

Index 277

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