Gendering the enlightenment: conflicting images of progress in the poetry of Anna Lætitia Barbauld

Bradshaw, Penelope (1998) Gendering the enlightenment: conflicting images of progress in the poetry of Anna Lætitia Barbauld. Women's Writing, 5 (3). pp. 353-371. Full text not available from this repository.

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Abstract

Anna Laetitia Barbauld spent her formative years at the celebrated dissenting Academy at Warrington, from where she assimilated her earliest perceptions of Enlightenment thinking. It was here that she met many of the important intellectual figures of the Enlightenment with whom she would remain lifelong friends, and she inherited the Academy's tenets of toleration, liberal progressive thinking and the defence of liberty. In her poetry, however, images of the Enlightenment are problematic and demonstrate an inner conflict between an ideal set of Enlightenment values reflecting those at Warrington, which she feminises, and an opposing set of Enlightenment values, involving control, exploitation and repression, which she masculinises. This article examines this conflict in Barbauld's poetry and looks at why the feminine agenda of freedom, although strongly valorised by the poems, is finally doomed and overcome by the darker masculine project of control.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Women's Writing
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1747-5848 (electronic) 0969-9082 (paper)
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/09699089800200051
Related URL(s):
Departments: Faculty of Education, Arts and Business > Institute of the Arts
Pre 2016 Departments: Faculty of Education, Arts and Business > Arts and Humanities
Depositing User: Insight Administrator
Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2010 11:52
Last Modified: 26 Aug 2016 16:08
URI: http://insight.cumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/389

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