Revision and Romantic Authorship / Edition 1

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The Romantic author as spontaneous, extemporizing, otherworldly and autonomous is a fiction much in need of revision. Zachary Leader argues that the continuing influence of a Romantic preference for what comes naturally, with a concomitant devaluing of secondary processes, distorts our understanding of the actual creative practices of writers of the period, even those most closely associated with Romantic assumptions. 'Second thoughts' (including those of collaborators) play a crucial role in the writings of Wordsworth, Byron, Coleridge, Mary Shelley, Clare, and Keats. Other assumptions complicated by a study of the actual revising practices of Romantic writers are those which associate composition with the organic and with process, or which characterize authors as independent agents or figures of coherent and consistent subjectivity. In the first part of the book, Leader shows how revisionary and editorial habits (those not only of the writers themselves but of their modern editors) reflect conflicting attitudes to the self or personal identity; in the second, these attitudes are related to the role of "collaborators" in the revising process, including family, friends, publishers, critics, and readers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198186342
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 5/28/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Roehampton Institute, London
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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1 Wordsworth, Revision, and Personal Identity 19
2 Byron, Revision, and the Stable Self 78
3 Coleridge's Revisionary Complexity 121
4 Parenting Frankenstein 167
5 John Taylor and the Poems of Clare 206
6 Keats, the Critics, and the Public 262
Appendix 316
Bibliography 323
Index 345
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