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Writers, Readers, and Reputations

Writers, Readers, and Reputations Author : Philip Waller
Publisher : Oxford University Press
Pub Date : 2008
Page : 1181
Language : en
Rating :

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Charles Dickens died in 1870, the same year in which universal elementary education was introduced. During the following generation a mass reading public emerged, and the term “best-seller” was coined. In new and cheap editions Dickens’s stories sold hugely, but these were progressively outstripped in quantity by the likes of Hall Caine and Marie Corelli, Charles Garvice and Nat Gould. Who has now heard of these writers? Yet Hall Caine, for one, boasted of having made more money from his pen than any previous author.

This book presents a panoramic view of literary life in Britain over half a century from 1870 to 1914, teasing out authors’ relations with the reading public and tracing how reputations were made and unmade. It surveys readers’ habits, the book trade, popular literary magazines and the role of reviewers, and examines the construction of a classical canon by critics concerned about the supposed corruption of popular taste. Certain writers were elevated as national heroes, yet Britain drew its writers from abroad as well as from home.

Authors became stars and celebrities, and a literary tourism grew around their haunts. They advertised products from cigarettes to toothpaste; they were fashion-conscious and promoted themselves via profiles, interviews, and carefully posed photographs; they went on lecture tours to America; and their names were pushed by a new professional breed: the literary agent. Some angled for knighthoods, even peerages, and cut a figure in high society and London clubland. The debated public issues of the day and campaigned on all manner of things from questions of faith and women’s rights to censorship and conscription. During the Great War they penned propaganda. Meanwhile the cinema was developing to challenge the supremacy of the written word over the imagination. Authors took to that too, as an opportunity for new adventure. Writers, Readers, and Reputations is richly entertaining and informative, amounting to a collective biography of a generation of writers and their world.

Writers Readers And Reputations

Author by : Philip Waller
Languange Used : en
Release Date : 2008
Publisher by : Oxford University Press

Description : Charles Dickens died in 1870, the same year in which universal elementary education was introduced. During the following generation a mass reading public emerged, and the term "best-seller" was coined...

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Elinor Glyn As Novelist Moviemaker Glamour Icon And Businesswoman

Author by : Dr Vincent L Barnett
Languange Used : en
Release Date : 2014-07-28
Publisher by : Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.

Description : Examining the authorial and cross-media practices of the English novelist Elinor Glyn (1864-1943), Vincent L. Barnett and Alexis Weedon trace Glyn’s work as a novelist in the United Kingdom, her suc...

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Author by : Juan Gabriel Vásquez
Languange Used : en
Release Date : 2016-05-19
Publisher by : Bloomsbury Publishing

Description : As Colombia's famed political cartoonist, Javier Mallarino, strolls through downtown Bogotá in the hours before a public celebration of his career in the grand Teatro Colón, he contemplates the star...

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Popular Literature Authorship And The Occult In Late Victorian Britain

Author by : Andrew McCann
Languange Used : en
Release Date : 2014-07-17
Publisher by : Cambridge University Press

Description : A study of the representation of the occult in late-Victorian popular fiction, exploring different perceptions of authorship and creativity....

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