Category: Bluestocking Salon

Bluestockings were public scholars who exchanged ideas in both published texts and in salons and assemblies frequented by men and women alike. In Bluestocking Salon, ABOPublic profiles eighteenth-century and twenty-first century female and feminist scholars and writers and their work. Here, we hope to foster the same kind of intellectual excitement and exchange of ideas enjoyed by our predecessors.

Editing Jane West: A Conversation with the Editors of A Gossip’s Story (1796)

A Gossip's Story by Jane West

The three of us (Devoney Looser, Caitlin Kelly, and Melinda O’Connell) worked together to co-edit Jane West’s A Gossip’s Story, and A Legendary Tale (1796), a novel that has been described as a starting point, if not the inspiration, for Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility (1811). West’s novel, like Austen’s, centers on two sisters, one…

Romantic Outlaws (Chapters 21-30): Motherhood, Literature, and Rebellion

Romantic Outlaws via popmatters.com

Chapters 21-30 of Charlotte Gordon’s Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and her Daughter, Mary Shelley examine the relationship between authors’ biographies and their fiction, their romances, and their partnerships. While this segment of the book includes deeply intriguing criticism regarding the writing process and the ideal romantic partnership, Gordon has several disconcerting…

Romantic Outlaws (Chapters 11-20): Motherhood, Literature, and Rebellion

Romantic Outlaws via popmatters.com

Chapters 11-20 of Charlotte Gordon’s Romantic Outlaws follows Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley as they begin to publish their most influential literary texts. Though Wollstonecraft would later write several fictional works, her political and philosophical writings have been her most successful. A Vindication of the Rights of Man (1790) and A Vindication of the Rights…

Romantic Outlaws (chapters 1-10): Motherhood, Literature, and Rebellion

Romantic Outlaws via popmatters.com

Last week, I began to read Charlotte Gordon’s recent text, Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and her Daughter Mary Shelley. While these two women are unarguably two of the most fascinating figures in literary history, I nonetheless expected their biographies to be somewhat dry, likely due to my limited, stereotypical understanding of…

Betsy Austin and Hannah Lewis: Female Entrepreneurs in Jane Austen’s Transatlantic World

Rachel Pringle of Barbadoes (1796) By Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827) Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, 2015

In our recent article in Modern Philology, “Jane Austen’s Afterlife,” Devoney Looser and I discuss Jane Austen’s literary legacy and its connection through her naval brother with two Barbadian freewomen: Betsy Austin (d. 1848) and Hannah Lewis (c. 1792), two women who ran successful hotels in Bridgetown, Barbados. We describe two newly published letters by…

Mary Davys, Playwright as Novelist

Frontispiece from Mary Davys’s The Northern Heiress [1716]Eighteenth-Century Collections Online

Mary Davys’s (1674-1732) conventional place in literary history is as an accomplished early novelist, known especially for The Reform’d Coquet (1724), Familiar Letters Betwixt a Gentleman and a Lady (1725), and The Accomplish’d Rake (1727). She wrote several other fictions, some of which she published in the early years of the eighteenth century and revised…

ASECS Roundtable: From Dissertation to Publication

Proposing Men: Dialectics of Gender and Class in the Eighteenth-Century English Periodical (1998) By Shawn Lisa Maurer Stanford University Press

In this post, we publish Shawn Maurer’s valuable talk from the ASECS 2011 Women’s Caucus roundtable, “From Dissertation to Publication.” It is largely unedited, and we are grateful to Professor Maurer for allowing us to reopen this conversation here on ABOPublic.   ASECS 2011 Vancouver Good afternoon. I want to start by thanking Misty Anderson for…