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The Crisis of Literature in the 1790s:
Print Culture and the Public Sphere

by Paul Keen

This book offers an original study of debates that arose in the 1790s about the nature and social role of literature and the new class of readers produced by the revolution in information and literacy in eighteenth-century England. The first part concentrates on the dominant arguments about the role of literature and the status of the author; the second shifts its focus to the debates about working-class activists and radical women authors, and examines the growth of a Romantic ideology within this context of political and cultural turmoil.

Contents: 1. The Republic of Letters; 2. Men of Letters; 3. The Poorer Sort; 4. Masculine Women; 5. Oriental literature; Conclusion: Romantic Revisions.

1999    314 pp.
0521432073      Hardback        $59.95