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Nineteenth-Century Women Poets: An Oxford Anthology
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Nineteenth-Century Women Poets: An Oxford Anthology (Hardback)

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Nineteenth-Century Women Poets is a major new anthology, turning a wide focus on a period which has traditionally had only its most eminent writers examined in any depth. Beginning with Anna Laetitia Barbauld's petition to William Wilberforce and ending with the myth-making Irish writers of the Celtic revival, this wide-ranging collection brings to light diverse female traditions that have for years remained in obscurity. While Nineteenth-Century Women Poets showcasts a host of female writers well-known in their day - Felicia Hemans, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and Christina Rossetti - it resists the narrow focus upon familiar middle-class authors taken by other anthologies of this period and contains works by working-class, colonial and political writers, in addition to the better-known names. The anthology draws on first editions for texts wherever possible, retaining the spelling and punctuation of the originals for a faithful representation.

The chronological progression of the title highlights the development of women's verse from the late Romantic period through to the Victorian fin-de-siecle, examining the political formations and cultural groupings to which the women belonged, along with the structures which made the development of their work possible, in particular the numerous minority journals which allowed them a coherent voice. The collection also explores the thematic connections between different writers, through a consideration of common preoccupations with marriage, slavery, military conflict, national identity, and religious and sexual discourses, and reveals how styles and genres changed across the century.

Isobel Armstrong is Professor of English at Birkbeck College, University of London. Joseph Bristow is Senior Lecturer in English at the University of York and currently holds the position of Senior External Research Fellow at Stanford University. Catharine Sharrock is Lecturer in English at the University of East Anglia.

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