Fellow Romantics: Male and Female British Writers, 1790–1835, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Fellow Romantics

Male and Female British Writers, 1790–1835, 1st Edition

Edited by Beth Lau


278 pages

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Hardback: 9780754663539
pub: 2009-07-28
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Beginning with the premise that men and women of the Romantic period were lively interlocutors who participated in many of the same literary traditions and experiments, Fellow Romantics offers an inspired counterpoint to studies of Romantic-era women writers that stress their differences from their male contemporaries. As they advance the work of scholars who have questioned binary approaches to studying male and female writers, the contributors variously link, among others, Charlotte Smith and William Wordsworth, Mary Robinson and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Felicia Hemans and Percy Bysshe Shelley, Jane Austen and the male Romantic poets. These pairings invite us to see anew the work of both male and female writers by drawing our attention to frequently neglected aspects of each writer's art. Here we see writers of both sexes interacting in their shared historical moment, while the contributors reorient our attention toward common points of engagement between male and female authors. What is gained is a more textured understanding of the period that will serve as a model for future studies.


'Beth Lau has assembled a strong group of scholars who adopt a new approach to the study of male and female writers in the romantic period. Rather than sorting writers by gender, these essays put men and women into conversation, exploring how they mutually inspired one another, influenced one another, shaped one another. The collection brings women within romanticism in a different way, showing how close they are to the major male writers of the traditional canon. We find, for example, refreshing accounts of Hemans and her connections with Byron, Shelley, and Wordsworth, of Austen’s use of romantic poetry, and of Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning’s shared interest in Byron and Shelley.' Jeffrey N. Cox, University of Colorado at Boulder, USA ’This volume is a welcome addition to a discussion recently begun in earnest…Highly recommended. All readers.’ Choice 'This remarkably cohesive volume presents clear, sophisticated discussions of poets and novelists from both the first and the second Romantic generations….Both technically and theoretically sound, Fellow Romantics challenges divisive approaches to the Romantics in a deliberate attempt to create an interpretative model that privileges coalition and community to factionalism and insularity.' Keats-Shelley Review, 2010 '… Fellow Romantics is able to explore the period as a time of fellowships, parallels and exchanges between male and female Romantics. This collection admirably demonstrates that, far from being reliant or derivative, the female Romantics were often as innovative as their male counterparts, with influence occurring in both directions across the gender divide.' BARS Bulletin

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Beth Lau; Revisiting the egotistical sublime: Smith, Wordsworth and the romantic dramatic dialogue, Jacqueline M. Labbe; Coleridge and Robinson; harping on lyrical exchange, Ashley Cross; Romantic ambivalence in Frankenstein and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Beth Lau; 'Something must be done': Shelley, Hemans, and the flash of revolutionary female violence, Susan J. Wolfson; Spiritual converse: Heman's A Spirit's Return in dialogue with Byron and Shelley, Alan Richardson; William Wordsworth and Felicia Hemans, Julie Melnyk; 'Does it not make you think of Cowper?' : rural sport in Jane Austen and her contemporaries, Barbara K. Seeber; The uses and abuses of imagination in Jane Austen and the romantic poets, Beth Lau; 'Beautiful but ideal': intertextual relations between Letitia Elizabeth Landon and Percy Bysshe Shelley, Michael O'Neill; Romantic and Victorian conversations: Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning in dialogue with Byron and Shelley, Jane Stabler; Index.

About the Editor

Beth Lau is professor of English at California State University, Long Beach, USA

About the Series

The Nineteenth Century Series

The Nineteenth Century Series

The Nineteenth Century Series aims to develop and promote new approaches and fresh directions in scholarship and criticism on nineteenth-century literature and culture. The series encourages work which erodes the traditional boundary between Romantic and Victorian studies and welcomes interdisciplinary approaches to the literary, religious, scientific and visual cultures of the period. While British literature and culture are the core subject matter of monographs and collections in the series,  the editors encourage proposals which explore the wider, international contexts of nineteenth-century literature – transatlantic, European and global.  Print culture, including studies in the newspaper and periodical press, book history, life writing and gender studies are particular strengths of this established series as are high quality single author studies.  The series also embraces research in the field of digital humanities. The editors invite proposals from both younger and established scholars in all areas of nineteenth-century literary studies. 

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