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Title: From penury to published poet : the cultural journey of Ann Yearsley
Author: Bowring, Barbara
ISNI:       0000 0004 7426 1748
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2018
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Ann Yearsley (1752-1806) was a humble rural worker who sold milk for a living, but was best known as a poet. Her success in getting a significant amount of work published dismissed the contemporary notion that to be poor and uneducated precluded a life of letters. This thesis examines the constraints and repressions faced by a woman from the lower orders with a will to write. Ann Yearsley’s journey into print is framed in the context of the poet’s effective negotiation through an eighteenth-century society still rooted in gender and class ideology and restraints. This study is distinctive in offering an updated account of an unlikely literary career. This is not a literary study of Yearsley, but offers a nuanced and critical reading of Yearsley’s poetry and correspondence to throw new light on her personal struggle to become a professional writer. This thesis concludes that Ann Yearsley was an important cultural figure in her time because she overcame the difficulties encountered by a female writer from the lower orders. In doing this she showed that a window existed for other women from the laboring classes to become published writers.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: PN0080 Criticism ; PR English literature