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Women's Literary Networks and Romanticism"A Tribe of Authoresses"$
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Andrew O. Winckles and Angela Rehbein

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781786940605

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781786940605.001.0001

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Sisters of the Quill

Sisters of the Quill

Sally Wesley, the Evangelical Bluestockings, and the Regulation of Enthusiasm

(p.16) Chapter Two Sisters of the Quill
Women's Literary Networks and Romanticism

Andrew O. Winckles

Liverpool University Press

This chapter traces the formation of a literary network of “evangelical bluestockings” in Regency England who yearned for the Bluestocking community of the past, but were constrained and frustrated by changing social, literary, intellectual, and religious landscapes of the present. These women, including Sally Wesley, Elizabeth Benger, Marianne Francis, and Elizabeth Hamilton, used a diverse set of mediation practices (including manuscript production and circulation) to create an intellectual community oriented around evangelical religion. This chapter ultimately argues that evangelical religion and theology offered a way for these latter day Bluestockings to deal with the shifting social, cultural, and artistic conditions of turn of the century Britain and that the literary networks which coalesced around their shared religious interests represented a significant means through which literary women formed, expressed, and published their ideas.

Keywords:   evangelicalism, bluestockings, manuscript circulation, intellectual community, Sally Wesley, Elizabeth Benger, Marianne Francis, Elizabeth Hamilton

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