Adopt an Author |
Maria Jane Jewsbury
|The Corvey Project at
Sheffield Hallam University
the Work of Maria Jane Jewsbury, by Lyndsey Clarke, May 2002
A Women's Desire for Fame and Ambition in the work of
Maria Jane Jewsbury.
Norma Clarke writes 'For a women, the word "fame" rhymed with
"shame"'. (Clarke, 1990, 71) How true this seemed to be for
the literary women of the nineteenth century. Fame, ambition, knowledge
and the concept of genius have all been debated in many writings of both
men and women and they feature passionately in Maria Jane Jewsbury's work.
This essay will focus on Jewsbury's Phantasmagoria; or Sketches of
Life and Literature (published 1825) and Three Histories (1831).
Both of which present the notion of female fame and ambition, also highlight
the divide between domestic life and literature talent, and provide examples
of the basic differences in attitudes between genders at this time, all
of which Jewsbury faced in her own life.
Jewsbury writes in a letter to Alaric Watts her 'discoverer' (Fryckstedt,
1984, 180-181) and trusted friend, describing the difficulties of her
life caring for her family, 'I think I could make a decent paper descriptive
of the miseries of combining literary tastes with domestic duties.' (Gillett,
1932, ii-xviii) Jewsbury was always infatuated with writing and literature.
In a letter she wrote to the popular author Felicia Hemans she revealed
that she was as young as nine years old 'when the ambition of writing
a book, being praised publicly and associating with authors, seized me
as a vague longing'. It is thought by most whom read 'The History of an
Enthusiast' that Jewsbury has based Julia, the heroine of the story, on
herself, this was undoubtedly my first thought. Jewsbury is constantly
described as energetic and enthusiastic for knowledge and she said herself
she was this way from an early age. Julia is very much the same; she cries
when her grandmother takes Macbeth away from her, 'her mind was athirst
for knowledge' ('The History of an Enthusiast' 1830,18). When asked what
she would wish her future to hold she asks for fame, contrasting to her
close friend Annette who chose to be a 'charming wife' and does not want
the burden of carrying knowledge (22). Julia chose fame and it is quite
possible that Jewsbury would have done at a similar age.
Fame! what energy dwells in that one word- what power to kindle and exalt!....the
life blood of my life...I feel I could surrender ease, health, happiness,
friends, fortune,....O Fame! let me not pass away unknown, a hidden rill
in the world's mighty forest. (51)
However, how Julia changes throughout the story; she realises women cannot
have both fame and love, 'What is Fame to woman, but a dazzling degeneration!
She is exposed to the pitiless gaze of admiration; but little respect,
and no love, blends with it....She is a jewelled captive- bright, and
desolate, and sad' (131-132). Hemans also seems to have a low opinion
of fame; ' Fame can only afford reflected delight to a women.' (Chorley
1836, 159) 'The Fame which she undoubtedly pursued she also suffered from...Fame
was a burden because fame was unwomanly.' (Clarke,1990, 34)
The reception in the story for Julia's want for fame is very negative
especially by the men; Mr Mortimer asks Julia,
'And what good would fame do you - a woman?' 'It would make amends
for being a women - I should not pass away and perish.' ...'Setting
aside the ten thousand chances against a women's achieving what shall
permanently and honourably distinguish her, she will probably suffer
great loss, certainly great trials, during her foray into the enchanted
wood; even her genius will probably be like a chariot-wheel, set on
fire and consumed by the velocity of its own motion; then her health-
her spirit- oh, you forget yourself, my dear child, make another choice.'
The idea that a women's health will suffer seems to be somewhat autobiographical,
Jewsbury became very ill in 1826 and she stopped writing for short while.
Jewsbury's character Mr Mortimer goes on to say that the only way a women
can increase her happiness is through the excitement of her domestic virtues
which he quotes from the preface of Madame Roland's 'Impartial Appeal'.
This opinion he has, expresses perfectly the view of most men at the time.
Jewsbury here is highlighting the opinions she and other female writers
have risen against. Although this is highlighted it does not necessarily
mean that she believes fame to be a completely positive desire. As Jewsbury
witnessed in Hemans life, literary fame does not always lead to happiness;
Hemans ended up alone bringing up five children as her husband, 'Captain
Hemans could not tolerate living with a wife who earned more than he did
within a society which judged as "reversal of the order of nature"',(Clarke,
1990, 83) seen again - an example of a man not being able to cope with
a successful wife, something which happens to Julia in 'The History of
an Enthusiast'. It is the longest of The Three Histories, and is
a very poignant story of a woman who is torn between the love for literature,
want for fame and knowledge and the love for a man, Cecil. She is contrasted
to her friend who seeks to fulfil the more conventional woman's role.
Cecil marries somebody else whilst Julia is concentrating on her career
in London. We are pre warned that he will not marry her as 'Cecil had
often in the pride of refined feeling avowed a determination never to
marry a woman with a fortune.'('The History of an Enthusiast 1830, 106)
This also seems reasonably true for Jewsbury herself, she had known Revd
William Fletcher since at least 1826 as she had mentioned him in a letter
to her sister, Geraldine but asking for secrecy as their father did not
approve yet.(Clarke, 1990, 156)He seems to be somewhat based on Cecil
and one wonders whether his possible pressure for her to leave her literature
is not what caused her to become ill in this same year.
The root of The Three Histories from Madame de Stael's very popular
novel, Corinne (Published 1807). This is a tale of a love affair
between Oswald and a beautiful poetess, who has been crowned a national
genius. Despite the love between the pair, Oswald on returning back to
England decides to honour his late fathers choice of bride for him, this
turns out to be Corinne's half sister. Oswald leaves Corinne and she dies
of a broken heart. The female genius in the story who is left broken hearted
is obviously who Julia ('The History of an Enthusiast') is based on, and
also the description of Egeria is similar to the poetess, 'Egeria; she
was a muse, a grace, a variable child, a dependent women, - the Italy
of human beings. ('The History of a Nonchalant') Oswald like Charles is
completely overwhelmed by the poetess: 'Look at her, she is the image
of our beautiful Italy.' (Corinne) Oswald also appears to be like
Richard in 'The History of a Realist' as he believes that the honour of
the family is so important he puts his own happiness on hold until the
bankruptcy is removed from the Winton's name. Oswald is prepared to spend
the rest of his life with someone, for the sake of honouring his father.
Corinne is one of the first works to put women's creativity on centre
stage, (Isbell, 1998) and many female authors including Jewsbury's sister
wrote pieces in answer to it. Hemans writes that it 'has a power over
me which is quite indescribable.'(Moers,1977, 177)
There was a general feeling amongst the male authors of the period, that
women could not be both a women and an author, they had to choose. When
writing to Dora Wordsworth, a dear friend to Jewsbury, she mentions something
which William Wordsworth has said which is typical of this male opinion
even when sympathetic like Wordsworth; 'Do you remember your father's
simile about women and flowers - growing in their native bed and transplanted
to a drawing room chimney place? I wish I could forget it.' (Clarke, 1990,
68) Marlon Ross wrote, Romanticism is not simply a chronological period
but also a powerfully masculine ideological construct, one in which women
could never function as autonomous and active agents. (Walkins,1952,125)
Daniel Walkins makes a very interesting comparison between Lynne Segal's
general observation of pornography in today's society and the masculine
ideology of the Romantic poets. He uses an example from Wordsworth's 'Tintern
Abbey' and 'Nutting'; both these pieces express 'the triumph and strength
of a masculinist ideology' (127) Segal argues that a likely explanation
for the increased consumption of porn by men-apart from profit- 'is that
pornography is a compensatory expression of men's declining power'. (128)
Walkins is not trying to imply that the male romantic poets are expressing
decline, we can see that this is certainly not the case, however he does
argue that the romantic, masculine identity and authority reveals that
there is, like pornography, an overcompensating for loss and weakness;
the Romantic poets have a loss of human fullness and the desire for human
freedom. (127-128)I would also argue that female writers in nineteenth
century were treated with secondary concern and with a lack of respect
similarly to women in pornography, they are just objects of convenience
and desire, nothing more.
Jewsbury correspond with Hemans and did so for many years, they were very
devoted friends yet so very different in character. Hemans' sister compares
the two friends and describes Jewsbury as having masculine energies contrasting
to Hemans being so intensely feminine. (Wilson and Haefner, 1994,131)
It is thought that the portrait of Egeria in 'The History of a Nonchalant'
is describing Hemans (Chorley, 1836, 187),
Other women might be more commanding, more versatile, more acute; but
I never saw one so exquisitely feminine...Her birth, her education, but
above all, the genius with which she was gifted, combined to inspire a
passion for the ethereal, the tender, the imaginative, the heroic- in
one word, the beautiful. ('The History of a Nonchalant', 231)
Chorley was a very close friend to Hemans and agreed with Jewsbury; although
'somewhat idealised, is as faithful to the truth as it is gracefully written'.
Hemans was seen as 'womanly' and attractive therefore was appropriate
as opposed to the supposedly masculine and therefore unacceptable aspects
of work of other women such as Jewsbury (Linkin and Behrendt,1999, 9)
It was not favourably looked upon to be masculine and have ambition, it
was 'contrary to custom' which dictated 'that women should be weak and
self-effacing...if custom and cultural law insisted that women were weak
and self- effacing, then women who were strong and self-assertive found
themselves in a vulnerable position.'(Clarke, 1990, 30) Women were thought
to be made for maternal and domestic duties and women who tried to be
otherwise were faced with this prejudice.
In 'The History of an Nonchalant' and 'The History of a Realist' there
are more examples of this male dominance. 'The History of a Nonchalant'
is the story of man similar to Julia in the aspect that he was enthusiastic
about the arts, he was only child and his mother had died when he was
an infant, all of which applied to Jewsbury. However he craved wisdom
instead of knowledge; 'he gave me books to read, good no doubt, but I
was a Greek, seeking after wisdom through a medium of beauty.'(The History
of an Nonchalant,1830, 208) It is a tragic love story, one of deceit and
death. Charles, the protagonist, although he seems sensitive still shares
the opinions of most men during this period:
She made a proposition -is it needful to say that it was received
and repelled with a vehemence almost amounting to anger?- live upon
the money earned by a women- that women my wife- and that my wife Egeria!-
I could have far sooner have died than permitted such a reversal of
the order of nature, such a desecration of my dignity and her softness.
'The History of a Realist' is the story of a man who wants to reclaim
the honour of his family's name before living his own life. Although he
seems very masculine in some of his opinions and he is not artistic or
philosophical in anyway, we witness through him the first admittance that
a women is of an equal mind; 'You have less to occupy you than I have,
and being a women, have less strong frame, though not a whit a less strong
mind.' (The History of a Realist,1830, 282). However this positive idea
is still wrapped in a negative manner.
Julia would 'be an angel....for the sake of gaining immortal knowledge.'(The
History of an Enthusiast, 1830, 50) Knowledge is talked about often in
the Three Histories. During this period it was seen by some as dangerous
and many characters in Jewsbury's work air their apprehensions about
literature. Jewsbury character Mrs Carhampton is used particularly to
do this; 'I never saw anything good come of people being bookish and learned
I do my duty when I take Shakespeare from you, for he
would only fill your head with nonsense. (History of an Enthusiast,1830,
10-11) She believes she has witnessed this in Julia's father; 'Books and
such like did him a great deal of harm indeed- injured his health- made
him poor.'(10-11) This opinion is a reflection of her age and class, when
we hear that in actual fact her father drank Gin and water a little too
much, (21) we realise that she is not necessarily correct. She represents
the traditional views of society; that women should have a place and not
involve themselves in the quest for knowledge as this could be dangerous;
'knowledge together with ambition spelled trouble.' (Clarke, 1990,23)
In Jewsbury's Letters to the Young (published1828) she warns her
sisters of knowledge and the moral dangers of literature, she asks her
' Are you determined...to learn by no one's experience but your own?'
(72) This suggests that she has come to believe that her pursuit for knowledge
and fame has been a mistake and does not want Geraldine to follow in the
In 'The History of a Realist' William is an example of the reader and
philosopher, he and the protagonist, Richard -the Realist who does not
share the youngsters enthusiasm for literature- debate the romantics and
imagination.('The History of a Realist',1830, 287-290) Richard believes
that his young admirer, soon to be brother in law, will grow out of his
passion for knowledge and speeds up this process by recommending him for
the job of lieutenant of the volunteer corps;' William Sydney flung away
Rousseau, and gave his whole soul to gratitude and the drill.'(292). The
enthusiasm for literature shown by William is seen by at least one character
in each History; in the 'Enthusiast' it is obviously Julia and in the
'Nonchalant' it is Charles, they are both similar to Jewsbury. She told
in a letter to Mrs Hall just before she left England for India, 'My three
Histories have most of myself in them.'(Gillett,1932, lxv) however she
also writes, 'Public report has fastened the 'Julia' upon me: the childhood,
the opening years and many of the after opinions are correct; but all
else is fabulous.' (Chorley,1836, 171). Evidently we must be careful not
to read them as autobiographical. However there are so many similarities,
it becomes hard not to compare her characters to the people in Jewsbury's
In each of the Histories there is also a character who objects to the
literature and passionate views of theses enthusiastic characters; Julia's
grandmother (HOE) and Richard (HOR) as mentioned previously, and also
Charles' father in 'The History of a Nonchalant' who I believe to be the
elder character of Richard, or quite possibly Jewsbury's opinion of business
men. Charles' father was described by his son; 'General Literature he
neglected, because he regarded taste and imagination with suspicion and
dislike.' ('The History of a Nonchalant' 1830, 201) At the end of 'The
History of an Enthusiast' it seems Julia has recognised that knowledge
is not the most essential feature in life, similar to Jewsbury when she
wrote to her sister, as mentioned previously.
Then books have lost their early charm. Knowledge- ah, is it come to
this! knowledge, though it still invigorates my understanding, no longer
fills my heart with unalloyed pleasure; it seems only to open my eyes
to fresh views of human crime and sorrow. ('The History of an Enthusiast',1830,
Jewsbury did actually become very famous; an old Manchester associate
described her entrance to a room,'The announcement of her name, at a party
set the room in commotion. There was a 'Hush!-silence!-hush! As she entered;
the music would cease, and the conversation come to a dead pause'. (Clarke,
Jewsbury became the leading writer for the Athenaeum and in doing
this had the ability to write like a man, she had freedom to write and
was not scared to, this fear was something which she accused other female
writers of suffering from. She wrote some of the first feminist criticism,
it was fresh and feisty. Her opinion was that the women writers of earlier
years were more 'masculine' for example Wollstonecraft and Baillie and
she seemed to have more respect for them. (Clarke, 1990, 90) In 'The History
of an Enthusiast', Julia is compared to Mary Wollstoncraft after describing
her writing as, 'most unfeminine(sic) style for a women- dreadfully indecorous!'
('The History of an Enthusiast', 1830, 175) However they still wish for
Julia to be at their party highlighting the superficiality and falseness
of the literary circle that Jewsbury may have found out for her self.
An example of this is when Jewsbury's conduct is described when staying
at the Wordsworth's home, Rydal Mount. Christopher North records this
Blackwood's Magazine in 1825, he was satisfied that she had conducted
herself as a young women should and says that she would certainly have
a place when male and female genius sit down to banquet. After acknowledging
her genius he then discusses whether she is 'bonny'(Clarke,1990,67) Clarke
comments on the description: ' The characteristics of the acceptable female
genius may be inferred from this ambrosial description: she will be pretty,
smiling, and ready to listen.' (67) Scandal amongst women writers was
common in this period. If a woman was seen to behave in a improper manner
she would be gossiped about. Major scandals of the time included historian
(but almost, now unread) Catharine Macaulay, she was guilty of a happy
marriage to a man twenty years her junior; Mary Wollstonecraft, mentioned
already, was the mother of an illegitimate child and also went travelling
alone; Mary Robinson, the discarded mistress of the Prince of Wales and
others and Laetitia Elizabeth Landon, adored by her public but undermined
by gossip and had probably had the most miserable end to any women mentioned
here. (Oxford World Classics The Magazine). Women were treated
with such difference to men, in Shakespeare's plays there are men of high
profile like Gloucster in King Lear who have illegitimate children and
this particular character finds his circumstances humorous, 'This knave
came something saucily into the world before he was sent for, yet was
his mother fair; there was good sport at his making, and the whoreson
must be acknowledged'. (Shakespeare, Act 1:1)
Wordsworth's shared the male view of female poets, 'Wordsworth was not
alone in wishing her to put down her pen and take up her needle. This
was also the point of Byron's nasty puns of gender.' (Wilson and Haefner,1994,139)
Both male poets are referring to Hemans. Chorley wrote that Heman's 'wears
under all her robes of triumph, the pitying heart of a women.' (Chorley,1836,
I:27)Women have always been oppressed and in literature there is no exception.
It originates from the Bible; Eve tempts Adam into eating the forbidden
fruit and is also made from his ribs so is consequentially seen as inferior.
Mary Wollstonecraft took the first step toward liberating herself from
the crippling strictures of feminine propriety: she identified the ideology
that assigned women their social position and cultural definition; she
then argued that it was both unnatural and wrong. (Poovey, 1984, 48)
Religion is a topic throughout Jewsbury's work, in 'The History of a Nonchalant'
Guise Stuart is the villain in the story, and is likened to a serpent,
creating negative biblical images of a male, and Cecil's wife is named
Mary. I do believe that Jewsbury has chosen this name on purpose, a simple
and holy name for a chaplain who could not marry a 'women with a fortune'.
And when Julia was growing up her Grandmother locked away all books except
the bible, 'you go and lock up every single scrap of a book about the
house, except - except you understand - the large bible.' ('The History
of an Enthusiast', 1830, 9)
One of the major differences in Jewsbury's 'The History of an Enthusiast'
and De Stael's Corinne is that the heroine does not die, when her
heart has been broken. Julia does not give up this is the true strength
shown in this story. Unlike most other women in literature Julia comes
to terms with her heart and copes on her own. Juliet and Ophelia are just
two of the most obvious examples of weak female characters who submit
to suicide due to the actions of men. Anna Jameson's heroine in Diary
of an Ennuyee is another example of a women dying from a broken heart.
It is a very negative image of women, portraying them as unable to survive
without men; Physical death shows a lack of opportunity it is the end
for women, without men they have no options. Jewsbury may have killed
Egeria off in 'The History of a Nonchalant' as she represented opportunity
she could have provided for herself but her husband stopped her, the perfect
Egeria would have been flawed and not been as soft and delicate if she
had worked. (Clarke,1990, 83) At the end of 'The History of an Enthusiast'
Julia ends by identifying with Shelly':
O lift me as a wave, a leaf, a cloud; /I fall upon the thorns of life-I
bleed; /A heavy weight of hours has chained and bowed /One too like
thee, tameless, and swift, and proud
This is very appropriate for her to compare herself to a man, she is handling
the situation in a very masculine way.
In Phantasmagoria Jewsbury deals with suicide and how women deal
with the loss of love;
Many other girls in Ellen's situation, would have had a violent fit
of illness, been given up by their doctors, have recovered to the surprise
of their friends, and after looking pale and interesting for a sufficient
space of time, would have married some one else. (Phantasmagoria
vol: 2 184)
This is also a good example of Jewsbury's sarcastic criticism of literature
at the time. The heroine in 'The Lonely Grave' commits suicide due to
a broken heart. Another tale that tells the story of loss but from a different
angle is 'The song of the Hindoo Women'. She publicly commits suicide
to be with her husband in the spirit world, this is the common thing to
do in their culture, and the 'Women of Suli' would rather die than be
taken over by the Albanians. However the most ridiculous suicide in Phantasmagoria
is in 'Arria'. The heroine in this poem stabs herself when her husband
is dying to show her love and help in dying, ' Then rose the wife and
women high, and died, to teach him how to die, It is not painful, Paetus
-ay!' She dies so that he knows it is not painful. Phantasmagoria has
been read by some to be women's book,
However by means of such simple shifts as reading through the pronoun
'he' to the female author whose experiences are recast and shaped for
public consumption, it will be seen that Phantasmagoria emerges as a significant
text in the history of women's relation to literary production in the
early part of the nineteenth century. (Clarke,1990, 55)
As we have seen in The Three Histories, some of Jewsbury's work
in Phantasmagoria discusses ambition and women's place in literature.
The most obvious piece which gives an example of this is 'The Miseries
of Mediocrity or Confessions of Disappointed Author'. This is the tale
of a man who has to admit to himself that he is not made for a career
in literature. However, if this is read with a female in mind then a very
interesting slant is thrown on the piece; the women would be giving up
literature as her mind is simply not strong enough to cope with the pressure
and also is not talented enough, ' The vain pursuit of literary fame is
now over.' (Phantasmagoria ,1825, II : 244)
Jane Carlyle asks 'Why do women marry? God knows, unless it be that
do not find scope enough for their genius and qualities in an easy life.'
(Clarke,1990,155) It could be possible that after everything Jewsbury
wrote whether fiction or autobiographical, she came to the conclusion
that it was not fame or knowledge that was the key to happiness but was
a man, as she married in 1832. She did not make the same mistake as Julia
in 'The History of an Enthusiast'; she was not left alone. She literally
lived the life that Julia would have had if she had chosen differently,
married to a chaplain and then emigrating to India. Also 'by 1832 she
had passed the all important age of 30 which marked the divide between
an unmarried women and an old maid.'(155) I believe that another key difference
between her and Julia is that the fictional character felt real passion
for her unrequited love however from reading Jewsbury's letters to Dora
Wordsworth I feet that Jewsbury just settled with the marriage; she had
turned him down previously. I do not doubt that she had affection for
Fletcher and this grew stronger over time but it generates a distressing
thought within me to think that Jewsbury really was no happier than Julia
was, neither of them found true happiness outside of their writing.
Wordsworth had a lot of respect for Jewsbury and she was very close to
his family, he wrote a two poems about some gold and silver fishes she
bought him as a gift. The last stanza of the second poem, Liberty is directly
addressing her.(3)It was published after she had died and so she never
read this lovely gesture written by her mentor and good friend. He also
pays tribute to her at the end of the poems (4) 'She had, within the range
of the Author's acquaintance, no equal.' (Poetical works,1969, 529) Felicia
Hemans continues to write about Jewsbury months after her death. (5) She
was 'deeply and permanently affected by the untimely fate of one so gifted
and so affectionately loving me, as our poor lost friend.' (Chorley, 1990,313)
However she also writes,
'I would rather, a thousand times, that she should have perished thus,
in the path of her chosen duties, than have seen her become the merely
brilliant creature of London literary life, living upon those poor succes
de societe, which I think utterly ruinous to all that is lofty, and holy,
and delicate in the nature of a highly-endowed women. (Wilson and Haefner,
Hemans would rather Jewsbury to have died in this way than to have been
ruined by the life of the literary circle in London. This automatically
reminds us of Julia in 'The History of an Enthusiast'. Mrs Ellis in1838
The author of 'The Enthusiast' has, in the story, bequeathed to the world
a striking and most melancholy picture of the ceaseless conflict, the
insatiable thirst for what is unattainable, and the final wretchedness
necessarily attendant upon the ungoverned ambition of superior intellect,
when associated with the natural dependence and susceptibility of women.
This description of Jewsbury was published as an obituary notice in the
Christian Keepsake. Literary women of this period were faced with a terrible
choice, they could not be happy without their passion for writing and
literature however, it does seem that having a husband is also needed
for this happiness. Tying to combine the two seems almost impossible,
especially with the attitudes of the men at the time. Jewsbury in the
last paragraph of 'History of an Enthusiast' writes that men who can marry
a women of genius is 'comparatively rare, and their power of doing heart-homage
to female genius, is no less a gift than genius itself.' ('History of
an Enthusiast',1830, 151) Furthermore 'In a literary career, as in every
other, there grow no thornless roses.' (124)
Blain, Virginia, et al. 1990. The feminist Companion to Lterature
in English.New Haven: Yale UP.
Chorley, Henry. 1836. Memorials of Mrs Hemans in Two Volumes.
London: ? One Chapter was extremely helpful and the others provided a
good background to Jewsbury and Heman's friendship.
Clarke, Norma. 1990. Ambitious Heights, Writing, friendship, love
- the Jewsbury sisters Felicia Hemans and Jane Carlyle. London and
New York : Routledge. This was extremely helpful; it provided a background,
comments on Jewsbury's work and also an overview of the general opinions
of the period.
de Staël, Madame. 1998. Corinne - or Italy. Trans. and ed.
by Sylvia Raphael. Intro.John Isbell. Oxford: Oxford UP.
Fryckstedt, Monica Correa. "The Hidden Rill: The Life and Career
of Maria Jane Jewsbury: I." Bulletin of the John Rylands University
Library of Manchester 66.2 (1984): 177-203.Very interesting and there
is a lot on Lays of Leisure Hours and Letters to the Young but
limited information or comments on Phantasmagoria and The Three Histories.
Gillett, Eric. Maria Jane Jewsbury: Occasional Papers, Selected with a
Memoir. London: Oxford University Press, 1932. Deals with Jewsbury's life
and feelings very well, there as a focus on her letters rather than on
her poetry of prose.
Homans, Margaret. 1980. Women Writers and Poetic Identity. Princeton:
Princeton U P. Not anything specific on Jewsbury, however some feminist
Johnston, Judith. 1997. Anna Jameson, Victorian Feminist, Women of
Letters. Yale: Yale UP, Scolar Press. Limited information on Jewsbury.
Lancashire Worthies. 1874-7. 2nd Series. A good background to her
life and family.
Harriet Kramer Linkin and Stephen C. Behrendt, eds. 1999. Romanticism
and Women Poets: Opening the Doors of Reception. Lexington: U P of
Kentuck. A good introduction to the topic with many examples of different
Moers, Ellen. (1978) Literary Women. The Women's Press Limited.
This book was a good general book for the attitudes of the period.
Mary Moorman.19571965. William Wordsworth: A Biography.
2 vols. a Biography, Oxford: Oxford U P. Good for the male opinion and
helpful to me as Jewsbury was friends with Wordsworth and his family.
Shattock, Joanne, ed. 1993. The Oxford Guide to British Women Writers.
Oxford and New York : Oxford University Press. An excellent starting point
and pointed me towards some relevant books.
Todd, Janet, ed. 1989. British women writers: a critical reference
guide. New York : Continuum. Similar to Shattock, nothing specific.
Walkins, Daniel. 1952. Sexual Power in British Romantic Poetry.
Florida: U P of Florida. Some unusual and interesting ideas, however nothing
specific to Jewsbury.
Wilson, Carol Shiner and Joel Haefner, eds. 1994. Re-visioning Romanticism:
British Women Writers, 1776-1837. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania
P. Very helpful, with some comments and criticism of Jewsbury's Three
TO THE TOP OF THE PAGE