Epistolary Fiction in Europe, 1500-1850

Overview

Thomas O. Beebee offers a history of epistolary fiction as a major phenomenon practiced across Europe from the Renaissance to the mid-nineteenth century. He shows how epistolary fiction appropriated the status and power the letter had already acquired, and goes on to explore a number of related discourses and themes, including the letter writing manual, self-referential aspects of the letter, news and travel reporting, the relationship between letters and gender, and historically-specific letter writing by ...

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Overview

Thomas O. Beebee offers a history of epistolary fiction as a major phenomenon practiced across Europe from the Renaissance to the mid-nineteenth century. He shows how epistolary fiction appropriated the status and power the letter had already acquired, and goes on to explore a number of related discourses and themes, including the letter writing manual, self-referential aspects of the letter, news and travel reporting, the relationship between letters and gender, and historically-specific letter writing by eighteenth- and nineteenth-century authors including Austen, Balzac, and Dostoevsky. There is a bibliography of major European epistolary fiction to 1850.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Thomas O. Beebee's Epistolary Fiction in Europe 1500-1850 is a vital contribution to literary history and to studies of genre and narrative...Epistolary Fiction in Europe is an impressive achievement...I especially admired his ability to synthesize and contextualize literary history, feminist theory, and critical theory in a compelling, erudite, and indispensible study." Comparative Literature

"Beebee's is a very dense and informative study, which also offers some real gems of literary interpretation, presented almost casually along the way...an important resource for anyone intersted in the cultural and literary history of letters." L'Esprit Créateur

"In Epistolary Fictin in Europe, 1500-1850, Tomas O. Beebee offers a fascinating and theoretically sophisticated analysis..." Studies in English Literature

"Indispenable...The research that has gone into this book is remarkable." The Comparatist

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521622752
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1999
  • Series: Literature, Culture, Theory Series
  • Pages: 277
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments; 1. Introduction: letters, genealogy, power; 2. Ars dictaminis: the letter-writer in the machine; 3. Self-reflexive letters; 4. Epistolary defamiliarization; 5. The lettered woman as dialectical image; 6. A revolution in letters; 7. The ghost of epistolarity in the nineteenth-century novel; Postscript; Notes; Bibliography; Index.

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