By Robert Mcclure Smith, Ellen Weinauer (eds.)
Elizabeth Stoddard used to be a talented author of fiction, poetry, and journalism; effectively released inside of her personal lifetime; esteemed by means of such writers as William Dean Howells and Nathaniel Hawthorne; and positioned on the epicenter of recent York's literary global. still, she has been nearly excluded from literary reminiscence and value. This publication seeks to appreciate why. via reconsidering Stoddard’s lifestyles and paintings and her present marginal prestige within the evolving canon of yank literary experiences, it increases vital questions about women’s writing within the nineteenth century and canon formation within the twentieth century.
Essays during this research find Stoddard within the context of her contemporaries, reminiscent of Dickinson and Hawthorne, whereas others situate her paintings within the context of significant 19th-century cultural forces and matters, between them the Civil struggle and Reconstruction, race and ethnicity, anorexia and feminine invalidism, nationalism and localism, and incest. One essay examines the advance of Stoddard's paintings within the mild of her biography, and others probe her stylistic and philosophic originality, the journalistic roots of her voice, and the elliptical issues of her brief fiction. Stoddard’s lifelong venture to articulate the character and dynamics of woman's subjectivity, her tough remedy of girl urge for food and may, and her depiction of the advanced and sometimes ambivalent relationships that white middle-class ladies needed to their household areas also are thoughtfully considered.
The editors argue that the forget of Elizabeth Stoddard's contribution to American literature is a compelling instance of the contingency of serious values and the instability of literary heritage. This research asks the query, Will Stoddard endure?” Will she proceed to float into oblivion or will a brand new iteration of readers and critics safe her tenuous legacy?
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Extra resources for American Culture, Canons, and the Case of Elizabeth Stoddard
In 1888–89, Stedman was able to persuade the New York ¤rm of Cassell to publish revised editions of all three novels. Once more, despite a ®urry of interest, they sold poorly, yet even the promise of success provided Elizabeth with renewed incentive to write, and she produced a good number of essays, poems, and stories over the next several years. In 1895, Houghton Mif®in issued her selected Poems; in 1897, at a congratulatory dinner given in Richard’s honor in which he was commemorated by Howells, Arthur Conan Doyle, Edmund Gosse, and others, she, too, received frequent praise.
Edmund Clarence Stedman Papers, Rare Book and Manuscript Collection, Columbia University Library, New York. By permission). 11. Letter from Bayard Taylor to Elizabeth Stoddard, 21 November 1862, Taylor, Selected Letters of Bayard Taylor 194. 12. Letter from Elizabeth Stoddard to Elizabeth Akers Allen, 28 March 1874. Colby College Special Collections, Waterville, ME. By permission. 34 / Sandra A. Zagarell 13. See Matlack, “Literary Career” 501–8, and Buell and Zagarell, “Biographical and Critical Introduction” xx, for a fuller discussion of Lolly Dinks’s Doings.
Her spirits were high, and her disposition willful” (108). A high-spirited and willful aesthetic disposition has, in our eyes, similarly puzzled a staid American literary scholarship to the degree that it has found Stoddard all too conveniently repressible. Consequently, an attempt to establish Stoddard as one of the pivotal American writers of the nineteenth century, a veritable return of the repressed, necessarily complicates our understanding of women’s literature in this period. In seeking to effect that complication, this volume makes an initial gesture toward a more comprehensively gendered reading of nineteenth-century women’s literature and the literary history it has made.
American Culture, Canons, and the Case of Elizabeth Stoddard by Robert Mcclure Smith, Ellen Weinauer (eds.)
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