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The Oxford History of Popular Print CultureVolume Six: US Popular Print Culture 1860-1920$
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Christine Bold

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199234066

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199234066.001.0001

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Understanding Readers of Fiction in American Periodicals, 1880–1914

Understanding Readers of Fiction in American Periodicals, 1880–1914

Chapter:
(p.591) Chapter 29 Understanding Readers of Fiction in American Periodicals, 1880–1914
Source:
The Oxford History of Popular Print Culture
Author(s):

Charles Johanningsmeier

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199234066.003.0030

This chapter presents a methodological enquiry into the actual readers of serialised fiction in American periodicals published between 1880 and 1914, with particular emphasis on their role in creating the ‘meaning’ of fiction. It also explains how to understand better the readers of large-circulation periodical fiction, as well as the effects of such fiction on them. The chapter first provides an overview of scholarship and its limitations in elucidating the important contributions of periodical fictions to American literary culture before and after the turn of the twentieth century. It then proposes a new methodological approach for understanding readers of periodical fiction, as well as the reader-fiction interaction and how readers responded to individual periodicals and texts. Finally, it outlines directions for future research regarding the nature of periodical fiction reading.

Keywords:   readers, serialised fiction, periodicals, periodical fiction, literary culture, reading

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