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By Shirley Samuels

This Companion offers the present kingdom of feedback within the box of yankee fiction from the earliest declarations of nationhood to secession and civil conflict.

  • Draws seriously on ancient and cultural contexts in its attention of yankee fiction
  • Relates the fiction of the interval to conflicts approximately territory and sovereignty and to problems with gender, race, ethnicity and identity
  • Covers varied types of fiction, together with children’s literature, sketches, polemical items, ancient romances, Gothic novels and novels of exploration
  • Considers either canonical and lesser-known authors, together with James Fennimore Cooper, Hannah Foster, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville and Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • Treats overlooked issues, resembling the Western novel, technological know-how and the radical, and American fiction in languages except English

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Extra info for A companion to American fiction, 1780–1865

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Webster, Noah (1790). A Collection of Essays and Fugitive Writings on Moral, Historical, Political, and Literary Subjects. Boston: I. Thomas & E. T. Andrews. Winans, Robert (1975). ’’ Early American Literature 9, 268–75. Wood, Gordon S. (1972). The Creation of the American Republic, 1776–1787. New York: Norton. Wood, Sarah Sayward (1800). Julia, and The Illuminated Baron. A Novel: Founded on recent Facts Which have Transpired in the Course of the Late revolution of Moral Principles in France. Portsmouth, NH: Charles Peirce.

Thus an extended section of the epistolary action is devoted to a discussion of fiction and its dangers, a discussion that echoes the justification with which Brown prefaces his novel. This novel, we are told, is more ‘‘advantageous’’ than most: ‘‘the dangerous consequences of seduction are exposed, and the advantages of female education set forth and recommended’’ (Brown 1996: 7). This quite stereotypical appeal to seduction and female vulnerability gets replayed in the novel’s scene of critical literary judgment.

2 See the John Sayles movie Lone Star (1996) for an intriguing recent version of this story. RE F ERE NCE S AN D FU RT H E R READI NG Agamben, Giorgio (2000). Means without End: Notes on Politics, trans. Vincenzo Binetti and Cesare Casarino. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Balibar, Etienne (1994). Masses, Classes, Ideas: Studies on Politics and Philosophy before and after Marx, trans. James Swenson. New York: Routledge. Barnes, Elizabeth (1997). States of Sympathy: Seduction and Democracy in the American Novel.

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