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THE WOMAN POET EMERGES: THE LITERARY TRADITION OF MARY COLERIDGE, ALICE MEYNELL, AND CHARLOTTE MEW
Feminist criticism offers a re-visioning of literary analysis by studying the influence of gender identity on author, character, audience, and critic. While feminist critics have focused on the novel and contemporary poetry, they are just beginning to examine women poets of the Victorian era, the first literary period to accept women as poets. Elaine Showalter's A Literature of Their Own offers a theory of women writers as a subculture within a dominant male tradition: their work evolves from a Feminine "imitation" and "internalization" of the dominant standards into first, a Feminist "protest" and search for "autonomy" and finally, a Female literature of "self-discovery" and identity. Adapting this matrix to a study of three poets--Mary Coleridge, Alice Meynell, and Charlotte Mew--the dissertation seeks to redefine the stereotypical Victorian Poetess by discovering the feminist poetics which inspired and guided her. Although she wrote with the burden of the Romantic priest of the imagination or the Victorian priest of social reform as her male models, she could not escape, in fact often turned to, her female identity to define herself as a poet. After a close examination of three individual poets, the dissertation will conclude with an overview of how their processes are echoed in a larger collection of Victorian women's poetry.
British and Irish literature|Womens studies
CRISP, SHELLEY JEAN, "THE WOMAN POET EMERGES: THE LITERARY TRADITION OF MARY COLERIDGE, ALICE MEYNELL, AND CHARLOTTE MEW" (1987). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI8710440.