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Aphra Behn Studies

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Aphra Behn was England's first professional woman writer, but her status as a major author has only recently become clear. Between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries Behn was denigrated for her "unwomanly" subject matter and intellectual immodesty. In the twentieth century she has been increasingly viewed as a leading dramatist of the Restoration and a founder of the English novel. This collection forms an important resource for those studying seventeenth century English literature and drama, and for those interested in the development of women's writing.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This collection clearly conveys the centrality of Behn's gender as well as to the history of her reception, which is outlined by Todd in her introduction. Behn enters the canon emphatically as a woman. Todd's timely collection, embracing a variety of approaches and covering all aspects of Behn's literary output, makes an important contribution to this process." Albion

"This collection is powerful evidence of the impact of the women's movement and the maturity of feminist scholarship." Modern Philology

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521471695
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1996
  • Pages: 334
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction Janet Todd; Part I. Plays: 1. Sexual politics and party politics in Behn's drama, 1678–83 Sue Owen; 2. Popish plots: The Feign'd Curtizans in context Alison Shell; 3. Fiction feigning feminity: false counts and pageant kings in Aphra Behn's Popish Plot writings Ros Ballaster; 4. More for seeing than hearing: Behn and the use of theatre Dawn Lewcock; 5. The Rover and the eighteenth century Jane Spencer; Part II. Poetry: 6. Aphra Behn: poetry and masquerade Paul Salzman; 7. 'For when the act is done and finish't cleane, what should the poet doe, but shift the scene?': propaganda, professionalism and Aphra Behn Virginia Crompton; 8. Aphra Behn: the politics of translation Elizabeth Spearing; 9. 'But to the touch were soft': sex, property and the politics of the penis Jessica Munns; Part II. Fiction: 10. Who is Silvia: what is she?: feminine identity in Aphra Behn's Love-Letters between a Nobleman and his Sister Janet Todd; 11. Slave princes and lady monsters: gender and ethnic difference in the work of Aphra Behn Jacqueline Pearson; 12. Oroonoko's blackness Catherine Gallagher; 13. Confusing matters: searching the backgrounds of Oroonoko Joanna Lipking; Part IV. Biography: 14. Private jottings, public utterances: Aphra Behn's writings and her Commonplace Book Mary Ann O'Donnell; 15. New light on the background and early life of Aphra Behn Jane Jones.

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