Women in the Literary Marketplace
The books and letters in this exhibition present a cross section of writing
by English women in the nineteenth centurya period when women entered
the literary marketplace in unprecedented numbers. While many women wrote
and published books before 1800, few British women planned careers as
writers until the nineteenth century. And although there were notable
and celebrated exceptions, women were excluded from most areas of literature
until the end of the eighteenth century. Less than one hundred years later,
women wrote an estimated 20% of all material published, a remarkable change
in just three generations.
This exhibition explores how women authors
achieved such remarkable success in a profession dominated by men, operating
in a culture that frowned upon female literary ambition.
The Keepsake. London: Hurst, Chance and Co., 1856.
to Early Role Models