Download British Women’s Life Writing, 1760–1840: Friendship, by A. Culley PDF

By A. Culley

British Women's lifestyles Writing, 1760-1840 brings jointly for the 1st time quite a lot of print and manuscript resources to illustrate women's cutting edge method of self-representation. It examines canonical writers, reminiscent of Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Robinson, and Helen Maria Williams, among others.

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22 However, her discomfort regarding separate communities of women was reflective of general concerns that were only compounded by a religious context. 23 The Catholic connection is evident in the accusations levelled at Fletcher and Ryan that they were intending ‘to bring up these children for nuns’ (II, 18). Like the Anglican sisterhoods, the women’s interpretation of their spiritual mission in wider social terms meant that the boundaries of their community remained permeable and in the class and band meetings they opened their doors to their neighbours.

In contrast to Rizzo’s model, Fletcher generally configures her relationship to Ryan as maternal rather than conjugal. Fletcher laments her ‘insufficiency’ to look after their ‘family’ following Ryan’s death, but ultimately she determines ‘I saw the need of taking the Reigns reins into my own hand & supplying the place of both myself & my friend Ryan’ (III, 1). 29 On the twenty-eighth anniversary of her wedding (twentyfour years into her widowhood) Fletcher notes that ‘at this hour, I gave my hand and heart to John William De la Flechere’.

Nevertheless as he bore an honest character we accepted him. Mary Fletcher 43 But in a few days he appeared as one possessed of the Devil […] he run about the town night and day biding the people believe preaching Christ in the most rambling manner insisting he would live with us; that I should give him the Sacrament, & turning his body into all manner of forms, such as I think he could not naturally do. 24 But his shadowy presence reveals a potential threat to the women’s autonomy and demonstrates Fletcher’s awareness of the importance of distancing her community from association with the socially disruptive mania of enthusiasm, a condition traditionally understood as feminine and feminising.

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