While the individual essays in this collection each examine a particular aspect of women’s literary networks during the Romantic period, when taken as a whole, larger patterns begin to emerge and invite further exploration. Broadly speaking, these patterns might be organized according to five tentative claims: (1) networks led to a densely interconnected Romantic world; (2) manuscript letters and life writing were vital parts of literary networks and deserve re-examination as literature; (3) men were an important part of women’s literary networks, but not necessarily in all the ways we have come to expect; (4) women used networks to become active in political, social, and religious causes and debates from which they were otherwise excluded; and (5) women’s networks were intergenerational and trouble easy distinctions between literary periods....
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