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Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Woolf$
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Ann Martin and Kathryn Holland

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780989082624

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9780989082624.001.0001

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“No One Wants Biography”

“No One Wants Biography”

The Hogarth Press Classifies Orlando1

(p.243) “No One Wants Biography”
Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Woolf

Claire Battershill

Liverpool University Press

This chapter examines resistance to clearcut boundaries as the challenge for Leonard Woolf in terms of marketing Virginia Woolf's Orlando, as well as a moment at which the Hogarth Press's imaginative engagement with the generic business of bookselling becomes evident. In his 1928 essay, “Imaginative Biography,” Leonard Woolf quotes Egerton Brydges, a nineteenth-century man of letters who defines the genre as follows: “By Imaginative Biography, I mean an Imaginary Superstructure on the known facts of the Biography of eminent characters.” Woolf transports his own exploration of literary genre to the realm of the book trade, which is always informed by practical concerns. Woolf's remarks on imaginative biography have particular relevance to Orlando. The chapter then considers the confusion Orlando caused among readers and booksellers, along with Virginia Woolf's concern about the book's reception.

Keywords:   marketing, Leonard Woolf, Orlando, Hogarth Press, bookselling, biography, literary genre, book trade, readers

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