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Title: Eighteenth century women and the domestic mock heroic
Author: Lawton-Trask, Kathleen
ISNI:       0000 0004 7966 292X
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2018
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This thesis examines women's mock-heroic verse on domesticity, focusing on four female poets of the eighteenth century. Despite critical work on women's poetry, on the mock-heroic, and on the rise of a cult of domesticity during the period, there has been little sustained criticism of women's verse about domesticity, and even less about women's use of mock-heroics. This thesis closes a gap in the work of the past few decades by adding the work of women poets to the discussion of domesticity and mock-heroic verse. The mock-heroic has been identified as 'the exemplary mode of the eighteenth century' and 'the dominant idiom of the age': a form which late seventeenth and early eighteenth century poets developed to criticise the status quo. The fact that female poets wrote mock-heroic poems and sections of poems in the mock-heroic mode, as well as the range of poems by women which may be considered mock-heroic, demonstrates that women's use of what might be called the domestic mock-heroic merits more and different critical attention than it has received until now. This dissertation traces the use of mock-heroic poetry by four different female poets of the eighteenth century: Mary Leapor, Mary Jones, Elizabeth Moody, and Anna Letitia Barbauld. It demonstrates that the mock-heroic poems written by women differed significantly from those written by Scriblerians such as Alexander Pope, Jonathan Swift, and John Gay - both in form and in tone. Further, it argues that mock-heroics by women contributed significantly to the form's development throughout the century and to the intellectual shifts that occurred throughout the century.
Supervisor: Gerrard, Christine Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: English literature ; 18th century Britain ; Women's Writing