Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Pen and the PeopleEnglish Letter Writers 1660-1800$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Susan Whyman

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199532445

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199532445.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 21 January 2019

Letter‐Writing, Reading, and Literary Culture

Letter‐Writing, Reading, and Literary Culture

The Johnson Family and Anna Miller

(p.191) 6 Letter‐Writing, Reading, and Literary Culture
The Pen and the People

Susan E. Whyman

Oxford University Press

This chapter contrasts Jane Johnson's quiet reading and writing with the fast-paced public literary culture of her children — Robert and Barbara — and the patroness of their Bath poetry salon, Anna Miller. Changes in literary practices over the century, from the growth of epistolary fiction to the era of sensibility by the 1790s, are revealed through writings and reading records of Jane Johnson's children. It is suggested that the travelogue, methods of literary criticism, and the language of sentiment were influenced and shaped by letters. As sites of unsupervised reading, independent opinions, and cultural desires, letters had a political impact. Epistolary literacy thus provided a base for a free and active electorate at a time when political participation was still limited.

Keywords:   reading, epistolary literacy, literary culture, literary criticism, travelogue, language of sentiment, independent opinions, Bath, poetry salon

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .