Women in the Literary Market 1800-1900


Jane Austen, 1775-1817
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Until well into the nineteenth century, it was common for both male and female writers to publish under a pseudonym. Fiction, especially, was frequently published anonymously, as many authors did not want their true identities associated with such a low genre of literature.

For women, the cloak of anonymity was doubly important. Female assertion and self-revelation were viewed as unwomanly. Hence, writing under a man’s name could protect a woman from criticism for unladylike thoughts, and could increase her chances for an impartial review.

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Sense and Sensibility: A Novel. By a Lady. London: Printed for the author, by C. Roworth, and published by T. Egerton, 1811.
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continue reading Jane Austen


early role models
entering the literary market
learned poets
getting into print
charlotte bronte and george eliot
sin and sensation
new women
L.T. Meade
the three volume format
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