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Nineteenth-Century American Women's Serial Novels

Nineteenth-Century American Women's Serial Novels

Part of Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture

  • Publication planned for: March 2020
  • availability: Not yet published - available from March 2020
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108486545

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About the Authors
  • Nineteenth-Century American Women's Serial Novels explores the prolific careers of four exemplary novelists - E. D. E. N. Southworth, Ann Stephens, Mary Jane Holmes, and Laura Jean Libbey. These commercially successful writers helped to shape the popular tradition of serial magazine fiction by drawing on readers' tastes along with their cultural concerns. Their astonishing productivity led magazine editors and publishers to return to them repeatedly for more serials to be turned into even more novels, even as they reprinted these fictions under new titles. Dale M. Bauer analyzes how serials deployed the repetition of plots and the traumas representing the sources of women's anxieties and pain. Arguing that these novels provided temporary resolutions to the social, economic, and psychological tensions that readers faced, Bauer explains how this otherwise forgotten archive of fiction now offers an extraordinarily expanded range of women's literary effort from the nineteenth to the twentieth century.

    • Introduces US women's serial writing in the nineteenth century and major topics in US magazine fiction, such as 'the suffering plot'
    • Focuses on career-long analyses of four major US serial novelists, offering a new way of reading how serials work together over a course of a writer's career
    • Details the narrative strategies of serial fiction and provides a reason as to why serial writers used repetition as a hook for new audience members
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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: March 2020
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108486545
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 mm
    • contains: 10 b/w illus.
    • availability: Not yet published - available from March 2020
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1. Why read more Southworth?
    2. Stephens and the serial novel
    3. Women in nineteenth-century prisons
    4. Mary Jane Holmes's 'spooneys', 'crackers', and 'white niggers'
    5. Laura Jean Libbey and sexual transformation
    6. Racial intimacy and women serial writers.

  • Author

    Dale M. Bauer, University of Illinois
    Dale M. Bauer has written about feminism and American women's writing throughout her scholarly career. Her first book published in 1988 charted the narrative strategy of feminist dialogism. She is also the author of Edith Wharton's Brave New Politics (1994) and Sex Expression and American Women Writers, 1860–1940 (2009). Additionally, she has edited two major scholarly collections: The Cambridge Companion to Nineteenth-Century American Women's Writing (Cambridge, 2001) and The Cambridge History of American Women's Literature (Cambridge, 2012).

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