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Title: Concepts of Prydeindod (Britishness) in 18th century Anglo-Welsh Writing : with special reference to the works of Lewis Morris, Evan Evans, and Edward Williams
Author: Jenkins, Bethan Mair
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2009
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This thesis presents an analysis of the English-language work of three Welsh writers during the eighteenth century, spanning the period of the 1750s to 1794. During this period, the British state consolidated its power following the last of the significant internal uprisings in 1745, and attempted to create a British nation with internal unity. Such a unity entailed a renegotiation of older national identities as subjects attempted to partake of multiple identities simultaneously. In Wales, the manifestation of multiple identities was especially clear, as the language of the state did not accord with the mother tongue of the majority of Welshmen. Though Welsh literati had written in English since before the Act of Union (1536), choosing to write in English becomes more interesting for the critic during such a time of change. Previously, these works have been treated as aberrations, or literary curiosities less worthy of note than the Welsh-language productions of the same authors. This thesis argues that, instead, they should be analysed as offering an insight into these authors’ conception of Britain, and their place within the state and the new nation, both in the choice of language and the topics considered. As a theoretical basis for these analyses, I consider the concept of Prydeindod from the work of philosopher J.R. Jones, as distinct from the idea of Britishness, and as a way of complicating Anglocentric or binary discussions of Britishness. This in turn informs readings of the English-language productions of Welsh writers in the eighteenth century, and shows that their negotiations of new identities are not as forthright as has previously been assumed.
Supervisor: Jacobs, J. Nicolas ; Johnston, Freya Sponsor: Arts and Humanities Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: English Language and Literature ; Early modern English literature (1550 ? 1780) ; Languages (Medieval and Modern) and non-English literature ; Celtic ; National identity ; Anglo-Welsh ; Welsh literature ; English literature ; national identity ; Britishness ; Eighteenth Century