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By Joyce W. Warren, Margaret Dickie

What if the yankee literary canon have been accelerated to continually signify girls writers, who don't regularly healthy simply into genres and classes confirmed at the foundation of men's writings? How may the examine of yankee literature take advantage of this long-needed revision? This well timed selection of essays by way of fourteen ladies writers breaks new floor in American literary learn. no longer content material to rediscover and awkwardly "fit" girl writers into the "white male" scheme of anthologies and school classes, editors Margaret Dickie and Joyce W. Warren query the present limitations of literary classes, advocating a revised literary canon. The essays reflect on a variety of American ladies writers, together with Mary Rowlandson, Margaret Fuller, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Emily Dickinson, Frances Harper, Edith Wharton, Gertrude Stein, Amy Lowell and Adrienne wealthy, discussing how the current class of those writers via sessions impacts our analyzing in their work.

Beyond the point of interest of feminist demanding situations to American literary periodization, this quantity additionally reviews problems with a necessity for literary reforms contemplating alterations in race, ethnicity, type, and sexuality. The essays are priceless and informative as person severe experiences of particular writers and their works. Challenging Boundaries provides clever, unique, well-written, and useful arguments in aid of long-awaited alterations in American literary scholarship and is a milestone of feminist literary study.

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Similarly, ethnic and racial groups and classes have had differing histories. Although women may not have fully participated in the Renaissance in fourteenth- and fifteenth-century Italy, they have had renaissances of their own. One such was the tradition of local-color realism that flowered from about 1830 to 1900 in the United States. Its main authors were Harriet Beecher Stowe (181196), Rose Terry Cooke (1827-92), Sarah Orne Jewett (1849-1909), and Mary E. Wilkins Freeman (1852-1930). Their school produced a series of masterpiece works, which unfortunately continue to be marginalized by the gatekeepers of the American literary canon.

L. Parrington, Main Currents in American Thought, vol 3, The Beginnings of Critical Realism in America, 1860-1920 (New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1927-30), and Van Wyck Brooks, New England: Indian Summer (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1940), 99101. Identifying "a new spirit of realism" after the Civil War (4), Parrington established the date for the realist period in the United States which was adopted by later scholars. Elise Miller notes in "The Feminization of American Realist Theory" that twentiethcentury critics perceived mid-nineteenth-century women's writing as an "aberration" and rejoiced that it was finally overcome at the end of the century (38).

23. For a discussion of the disparaging remarks made by Edith Wharton and Willa Gather regarding women writers, see Elaine Sargent Apthorp, "Sentiment, Naturalism, and the Female Regionalist," Legacy 7 (Spring 1990), 18-19. For Whartons attitude toward local-color writers, see Donna M. Campbell, "Edith Wharton and the 'Authoresses': The Critique of Local Color in Whartons Early Fiction," Studies in American Fiction 22 (Autumn 1994): 169-83. 24. For a good discussion of the realists' devaluation of their female contemporaries as "minor," see Michael Davitt Bell's analysis of local-color writer Sarah Orne Jewett, The Problem of American Realism.

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