Reading the American Novel 1780-1865 provides valuable insights into the evolution and diversity of fictional genres produced in the United States from the late 18th century until the Civil War, and helps introductory students to interpret and understand the fiction from this popular period.
- Offers an overview of early fictional genres and introduces ways to interpret them today
- Features in depth examinations of specific novels
- Explores the social and historical contexts of the time to help the readers’ understanding of the stories
- Explores questions of identity - about the novel, its 19th-century readers, and the emerging structure of the United States - as an important backdrop to understanding American fiction
- Profiles the major authors, including Louisa May Alcott, Charles Brockden Brown, James Fenimore Cooper, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Harriet Beecher Stowe, alongside less familiar writers such as Fanny Fern, Caroline Kirkland, George Lippard, Catharine Sedgwick, and E. D. E. N. Southworth
- Selected by Choice as a 2013 Outstanding Academic Title
|Series:||Reading the Novel|
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About the Author
Shirley Samuels is Professor of English and American Studies at Cornell University. She is the author of Romances of the Republic (1996) and Facing America (2004), and editor of The Culture of Sentiment (1992) and The Companion to American Fiction, 1780–1865 (2004). She also edited the Cambridge Companion to Abraham Lincoln (2012).