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08.01.2018

Mary Shelley: Through the window

by Fiona Sampson   I’ve always liked buildings. When I was a child I used to get myself to sleep by imagining palaces that I designed room by room. I like the way a building tells you its age without meaning to, because it’s been designed according to the architectural fashion of its day. I […]

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23.03.2017

'A Revolution in Female Manners'’: The Political Portraiture of Mary Wollstonecraft

by Lucy Peltz   From America’s Declaration of Independence in 1776 to the end of the Napoleonic wars in 1815, Britain’s economic, social and political stability was in turmoil. Against this backdrop of revolution abroad, the relations between the sexes – and their proper roles — were increasingly challenged. While the figure of the respectable […]

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09.10.2016

Fictionalising 1816: The suicide of Fanny Imlay

by Lynn Shepherd I write literary mysteries. Taking the classic literature of the 19th century as the inspiration for new stories that inhabit the same world. I’ve worked with novels like Mansfield Park, Bleak House, and Dracula, and in my third book, I did the same with two of the century’s most remarkable literary figures: […]

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27.04.2016

Mary Wollstonecraft on Men

by Simon Court Mary Wollstonecraft is best known for A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, published in 1792, which is generally acknowledged to be one of the first recognisably feminist texts. Yet earlier, in December 1790, she published A Vindication of the Rights of Men, which introduces some of the arguments extended in Woman, […]

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04.10.2015

William Godwin: Political Justice, anarchism, and the Romantics

by Simon Court William Godwin was a major contributor to the radicalism of the Romantic movement. A leading political theorist in his own right as the founder of anarchism, Godwin provided the Romantics with the central idea that man, once freed from all artificial political and social constraints, stood in perfect rational harmony with the […]

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19.05.2015

Coleridge and Godwin: A literary friendship

by Pamela Clemit ‘No two persons can be conceived more opposite in character or genius than [Coleridge and Godwin]’, wrote Hazlitt in The Spirit of the Age (1825). He placed them side-by-side in his ‘Gallery of Contemporary Portraits’, as if to intensify each by the proximity of the other. In person and on paper, their […]

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