Reading Women: Literacy, Authorship, and Culture in the Atlantic World, 1500-1800

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Photos Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A. 2007 Hard Cover First Edition (US) First Printing As New Clean, Unmarked Book. Very Fine Dust Jacket

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2007 Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good+ dust jacket 9780812240542. Text clean and tight; Material Texts; 9.10 X 6 X 1.10 inches; 280 pages.

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Overview

In 1500, as many as 99 out of 100 English women may have been illiterate, and girls of all social backgrounds were the objects of purposeful efforts to restrict their access to full literacy. Three centuries later, more than half of all English and Anglo-American women could read, and the female reader was emerging as a cultural ideal and a market force. While scholars have written extensively about women's reading in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and about women's writing in the early modern period, they have not attended sufficiently to the critical transformation that took place as female readers and their reading assumed significant cultural and economic power. Reading Women brings into conversation the latest scholarship by early modernists and early Americanists on the role of gender in the production and consumption of texts during this expansion of female readership. Drawing together historians and literary scholars, the essays share a concern with local specificity and material culture. Removing women from the historically inaccurate frame of exclusively solitary, silent reading, the authors collectively return their subjects to the activities that so often coincided with reading: shopping, sewing, talking, writing, performing, and collecting. With chapters on samplers, storytelling, testimony, and translation, the volume expands notions of reading and literacy, and it insists upon a rich and varied narrative that crosses disciplinary boundaries and national borders.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812240542
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
  • Publication date: 1/12/2008
  • Series: Material Texts
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Heidi Brayman Hackel is Associate Professor of English at University of California, Riverside and the author of Reading Material in Early Modern England: Print, Gender, and Literacy. Catherine E. Kelly is Associate Professor of History at the University of Oklahoma and author of In the New England Fashion: Reshaping Women's Lives in the Nineteenth Century.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Introduction Heidi Brayman Hackel Hackel, Heidi Brayman Catherine E. Kelly Kelly, Catherine E. 1

Pt. 1 Pleasures and Prohibitions 11

1 Inventing the Early Modern Woman Reader through the World of Goods: Lyly's Gentlewoman Reader and Katherine Stubbes Mary Ellen Lamb Lamb, Mary Ellen 15

2 Engendering the Female Reader: Women's Recreational Reading of Shakespeare in Early Modern England Sasha Roberts Roberts, Sasha 36

3 Crafting Subjectivities: Women, Reading, and Self-Imagining Mary Kelley Kelley, Mary 55

Pt. II Practices and Accomplishment 73

4 "you sow, Ile read": Letters and Literacies in Early Modern Samplers Bianca F.-C. Calabresi Calabresi, Bianca F.-C. 79

5 The Female World of Classical Reading in Eighteenth-Century America Caroline Winterer Winterer, Caroline 105

6 Reading and the Problem of Accomplishment Catherine E. Kelly Kelly, Catherine E. 124

Pt. III Translation and Authorship 145

7 "Who Painted the Lion?" Women and Novelle Ian Frederick Moulton Moulton, Ian Frederick 151

8 The Word Made Flesh: Reading Women and the Bible Janice Knight Knight, Janice 169

9 "With All Due Reverence and Respect to the Word of God": Aphra Behn as Skeptical Reader of the Bible and Critical Translator of Fontenelle Margaret Ferguson Ferguson, Margaret 199

10 Female Curiosities: The Transatlantic Female Commonplace Book Susan M. Stabile Stabile, Susan M. 217

Pt. IV Afterword 245

11 Reading Outside the Frame Robert A. Gross Gross, Robert A. 247

Notes on Contributors 255

Index 259

Acknowledgments 265

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