A witty, fascinating feminist history of literary Britain. You've likely read at least one Jane Austen novel. Chances are you've also read Jane Eyre; if you were an exceptionally moody teenager, you might have even read Wuthering Heights. English majors might add a couple of others to this list . . . but there the trail ends. Were there truly so few women writing anything of note during late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain
In Not Just Jane, Shelley DeWees weaves history, biography, and critical analysis into a rip-roaring narrative of the nation's fabulous, yet mostly forgotten, female literary heritage. Focusing on the creative contributions and personal stories of seven astonishing women- Charlotte Turner Smith, Helen Maria Williams, Mary Robinson, Catherine Crowe, Sara Coleridge, Dinah Mulock Craik, and Mary Elizabeth Braddon-DeWees assembles a riveting, intimate, and ruthlessly unromanticized portrait of female life, and the literary landscape, during this era.
In doing so, she comes closer to understanding how a society could forget so many of these women-among them pioneers of detective fiction and the modern fantasy novel-who all enjoyed success, critical acclaim, and a fair amount of notoriety during their time, and realizes why, now more than ever, it's vital that we remember.