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Frances Burney and her readers. The negotiated image.

by Anna Paluchowska-Messing (Author)
Monographs 198 Pages

Summary

Was it possible for an eighteenth-century woman to become a celebrity and remain respectable? Could women’s commercial success in literature be reconciled with contemporary ideals of prescribed feminine domesticity? The rugged trajectory marked by the critical reception of the works by Frances Burney (1752–1840), an English novelist, diarist and playwright, reveals the dilemmas she faced at different stages of her career from a debutante to an acclaimed literary figure. Burney’s long life is set against the background of changing conventions in culture consumption and appreciation, and the book highlights the successes and failures of the techniques which the author employed in her texts for projecting a favourable image of herself as a woman and writer.

Table Of Contents

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Acknowledgments
  • Contents
  • Introduction
  • 1 “Snatching immortality for herself”
  • Setting the scene
  • Performing impeccable femininity
  • Strategy 1: remaining anonymous to ensure unprejudiced reading
  • Strategy 2: epistolary narrative as a means of construing an innocent heroine
  • Strategy 3: construing the heroine’s innocence through diegesis and mimesis
  • Strategy 4: intertextual contexts as misdirection
  • Misdirection step 1: establishing the author’s superior understanding and moral backbone through insightful assessments of flawed femininity
  • Mrs. Mirvan’s weakness
  • Madame Duval: disgust and fascination with feminine entrails
  • Mrs. Selwyn: disclaiming the masculine
  • Misdirection step 2: a comic relief
  • Conclusions: Burney’s Evelina as an illustration of eighteenth-century cultural sociability
  • 2 Seven Veils cast off?
  • Preface as a threshold of authorial image creation
  • Defence of the novel – Empowering the authorial self
  • Truth and fiction on the level of plot in The Wanderer
  • The question of voice: technicalities of narrating a novel
  • Bakhtin’s heteroglossia and Burney’s novels
  • Language in the novel
  • Conclusion: the dance of the author in Burney’s later novels
  • 3 The art of retrograde motion
  • Becoming the author of the author of her being28, or perfecting the art of retrograde motion
  • Factual distortions of “borderline poetics”?
  • The consummate art of crossing generic borders
  • Dr. Burney’s daughter, Dr. Johnson’s heiress
  • Conclusion: “her father’s representative”
  • 4 “Her place in public estimate”
  • The tradition of forgetting
  • The path of domestification
  • Other paths temporarily out of bounds
  • “Her place in public estimate”, or “what others may write about her”
  • The changing horizons and Burney studies
  • Changing horizons stage 1: forgetting the novelist, assessing the diarist
  • Changing horizons stage 2: political agendas
  • The latest change in the horizons
  • Conclusion
  • Bibliography
  • Series Page

cover

Bibliographic Information published by the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek
The Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the Deutsche
Nationalbibliografie; detailed bibliographic data is available online at
http://dnb.d-nb.de

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
A CIP catalog record for this book has been applied for at the
Library of Congress.

About the author

Anna Paluchowska-Messing is a faculty member and teaches English Literature at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland.

About the book

Was it possible for an eighteenth-century woman to become a celebrity and remain respectable? Could women’s commercial success in literature be reconciled with contemporary ideals of prescribed feminine domesticity? The rugged trajectory marked by the critical reception of the works by Frances Burney (1752–1840), an English novelist, diarist and playwright, reveals the dilemmas she faced at different stages of her career from a debutante to an acclaimed literary figure. Burney’s long life is set against the background of changing conventions in culture consumption and appreciation, and the book highlights the successes and failures of the techniques which the author employed in her texts for projecting a favourable image of herself as a woman and writer.

This eBook can be cited

This edition of the eBook can be cited. To enable this we have marked the start and end of a page. In cases where a word straddles a page break, the marker is placed inside the word at exactly the same position as in the physical book. This means that occasionally a word might be bifurcated by this marker.

Contents

Introduction

1 “Snatching immortality for herself”: Construing the image of the author in Frances Burney’s Evelina

Setting the scene

Performing impeccable femininity

Strategy 1: remaining anonymous to ensure unprejudiced reading

Strategy 2: epistolary narrative as a means of construing an innocent heroine

Strategy 3: construing the heroine’s innocence through diegesis and mimesis

Strategy 4: intertextual contexts as misdirection

Misdirection step 1: establishing the author’s superior understanding and moral backbone through insightful assessments of flawed femininity

Mrs. Mirvan’s weakness

Madame Duval: disgust and fascination with feminine entrails

Mrs. Selwyn: disclaiming the masculine

Misdirection step 2: a comic relief

Conclusions: Burney’s Evelina as an illustration of eighteenth-century cultural sociability

2 Seven Veils cast off?: On the negotiation of the authorial image in Burney’s later novels

Preface as a threshold of authorial image creation

Defence of the novel – Empowering the authorial self

Truth and fiction on the level of plot in The WandererTruth and fiction on the level of plot in The Wanderer

The question of voice: technicalities of narrating a novel

Bakhtin’s heteroglossia and Burney’s novels

Language in the novel

Conclusion: the dance of the author in Burney’s later novels

3 The art of retrograde motion: Frances Burney’s Memoirs of Doctor Charles Burney

Becoming the author of the author of her being28, or perfecting the art of retrograde motion

Factual distortions of “borderline poetics”?

The consummate art of crossing generic borders

Dr. Burney’s daughter, Dr. Johnson’s heiress

Conclusion: “her father’s representative”

4 “Her place in public estimate”: An (after)word on Burney’s place in the literary canon

Details

Pages
198
ISBN (PDF)
9783631821169
ISBN (ePUB)
9783631821176
ISBN (MOBI)
9783631821183
ISBN (Hardcover)
9783631805527
Language
English
Publication date
2020 (April)
Published
Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Warszawa, Wien, 2020. 198 pp.

Biographical notes

Anna Paluchowska-Messing (Author)

Anna Paluchowska-Messing is a faculty member and teaches English Literature at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland.

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Title: Frances Burney and her readers. The negotiated image.