«I’le to My Self, and to My Muse Be True»

Strategies of Self-Authorization in Eighteenth-Century Women Poetry

by Kirsten Juhas (Author)
Thesis 314 Pages


In their verse, many British women composing poetry in the long eighteenth century wrote about and reflected on the very process of writing itself. In doing so, they often imitated and adapted specific poetic topoi, motifs, and generic patterns established by their male predecessors and peers including, among others, Homer, Ovid, and Juvenal, Dryden, Pope, and Swift. In exploring the phallic connotations of ‘pen and ink’, in invoking the assistance of a personal muse, in writing sharp and effective ‘self-satires’, and in identifying themselves with Philomela, the mythological persona of the nightingale, women like Anne Finch, Mary Chudleigh, Sarah Dixon, Mary Leapor, Anna Letitia Barbauld, and Charlotte Smith fashioned and authorized themselves as (female) poets.


ISBN (Book)
Frankfurt am Main, Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2008. 313 pp.

Biographical notes

Kirsten Juhas (Author)

The Author: Kirsten Juhas studied English language and literature, German language and literature, and Cultural Studies at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität, Münster. From 1998 to 2003, she worked as a Research Assistant at the English Department as well as at the Ehrenpreis Centre for Swift Studies. She submitted her doctoral dissertation to the University’s Faculty of Arts in 2007.


Title: «I’le to My Self, and to My Muse Be True»