Tuesday 12th March 2019, 6:00pm-8:00pm, at the Keynes Library, 43 Gordon Square, Bloomsbury, London, WC1H 0PD
You are invited to our upcoming Centre for Nineteenth-Century Studies Forum talk with Prof. Sean Grass from Rochester Institute of Technology, New York.
The rise of autobiography as a commercial genre during the first half of the nineteenth century was, in its way, one of the decisive developments of the Victorian period in England. Amid a growing culture of celebrity, a maturing literary market, and the broad social concussions caused by England’s transformation into a modern industrial state, autobiography’s commercial rise embodied the emerging relations between subjectivity, textual form, and the capitalist market. In this paper, I discuss the dimensions of this commercialization and the ways in which it collaborated with other emergent techniques—copyright, portraiture, and census-taking, among others—for textualizing and commodifying identity to produce new forms of representation in the Victorian novel.
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