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The French Revolution and the British Novel in the Romantic Period

Cousins, A. D. / Napton, Dani / Russo, Stephanie (eds.)

The French Revolution and the British Novel in the Romantic Period

Series: Studies on Themes and Motifs in Literature - Volume 112

Year of Publication: 2011

New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 2011. X, 209 pp.
ISBN 978-1-4331-1639-1 hb.  (Hardcover)

Weight: 0.430 kg, 0.948 lbs

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Book synopsis

This book is a major reassessment of the French Revolution’s impact on the English novel of the Romantic period. Focusing particularly – but by no means exclusively – on women writers of the time, it explores the enthusiasm, wariness, or hostility with which the Revolution was interpreted and represented for then-contemporary readers. A team of international scholars study how English Romantic novelists sought to guide the British response to an event that seemed likely to turn the world upside down.


Contents: A. D. Cousins/Dani Napton/Stephanie Russo: Introduction. The French Revolution and the British Novel in the Romantic Period – M. O. Grenby: ‘Very Naughty Doctrines’: Children, Children’s Literature, Politics and the French Revolution Crisis – Stephanie Russo: ‘A People Driven By Terror’: Charlotte Smith, The Banished Man and the Politics of Counter-Revolution – Gary Kelly: ‘The Sentiments I Have Embodied’: Wollstonecraft’s Feminist Adaptation of the Revolutionary Novel – Stephanie Russo/A. D. Cousins: ‘In a State of Terrour and Misery Indescribable’: Violence, Madness and Revolution in the novels of Frances Burney – Stephanie Russo/A. D. Cousins: ‘Educated in Masculine Habits’: Mary Robinson, Androgyny, and the Ideal Woman – Dani Napton: Revolutionary and Counter-Revolutionary Agency in Scott’s Woodstock and Peveril of the Peak – Chris Danta: Revolution at a Distance: Jane Austen and Personalised History – Michael Ackland: Towards Rehabilitating ‘The Long Blighted Tree of Knowledge’: Mary Shelley’s Revolutionary Concept of Self-Governance and Dominion in The Last Man – Deirdre Coleman: ‘Adapted to Her Meridian’: The Novel, The Woman Reader, and the French Revolution.

About the author(s)/editor(s)

A. D. Cousins is Professor of English at Macquarie University, Australia. A member of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, he has published widely on early modern British literature and culture; his most recent publication is The Cambridge Companion to the Sonnet (with Peter Howarth).
Dani Napton is an honorary associate at Macquarie University. Her research is focused on English non-dramatic literature and culture from 1750 to 1900, with special attention to the history of ideas, rhetorical theory and practice, genre, landscape/place narrative and political theory, and historiography and representations of revolution and counterrevolution.
Stephanie Russo is a lecturer at Macquarie University. Her research is focused on the eighteenth- and nineteenth-century novel, particularly on gender, politics, the history of ideas, and representations of revolution and counter-revolution.


Studies on Themes and Motifs in Literature. Vol. 112
General Editor: Horst S. Daemmrich