The Invention of Female Biography  book cover
1st Edition

The Invention of Female Biography

ISBN 9780367876104
Published December 12, 2019 by Routledge
294 Pages

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Book Description

Mary Hays worked alone in compiling the 302 entries that make up Female Biography (1803). By contrast, producing a modern, critical edition of the work relied on the expertise of 168 scholars across 18 countries. Essays in this collection focus on the exhaustive research, editorial challenges and innovative responses involved in this project.

Table of Contents

1. The Invention of Female Biography Gina Luria Walker.  Part 1: Forgotten Women  2. Well Represented or Missing in Action? Queens, Queenship and Mary Hays.  3. The contribution of Isabella de Rosares and Isabella de Josa to the Development of Learning for Women in the Sixteenth Century.  4. 'Anonymous' The University Women in Hays's Female Biography.  Part 2: Omissions and Revisions  5. Commonwealths of Women: Republican Biography and Feminist Practice in The Female Biography and Project Continua.  6. Hays's Changes to her Classical Sources to Promote Female Agency.  7. Hays's Surprises.  8. Feminist Historical Recovery: Moving the 'Others' from Margin to Centre.  Part 3: Female Biography and Feminist History Traditions  9. Agrippa to Venturia: Ancient and Modern Companions to Female Biography.  10. Mary Hays and the Imagined Female Communities of Early Modern Europe.  11. Four Types of Incongruity: Adventures in Editing the Work of Tullia d'Aragona.  12. Women of the Civil War: Oliver Cromwell's Wife and Daughters.  Part 4: Contemporary Uses of Female Biography  13. Post-feminist Uses of Female Biography.  14. Female Biography: Towards Solidarity.


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Gina Luria Walker is Professor of Women's Studies, The New School, where she teaches Women’s Intellectual History. She is the Director of The Center for the New Historia at the University, now in formation, dedicated to the global feminist project of historical recovery of earlier women. She was editor of The Chawton House Library Edition of Mary Hays’s Female Biography (1803; Pickering & Chatto, 2013, 2014). With Mary Spongberg she is co-editor of a Special Issue on Female Biography of Women's Writing (2017).