A quick post to announce the publication of my review essay on recent studies of Victorian life-writing in the Journal of Victorian Culture.
I was asked to review Max Saunders’ Self Impression: Life-Writing, Autobiografiction, and the Forms of Modern Literature (Oxford: OUP, 2010) and Juliette Atkinson’s Victorian Biography Reconsidered: A Study of Nineteenth-Century ‘Hidden’ Lives (Oxford: OUP, 2010).
Both are ambitious and important studies. They help to redress a long-standing critical tradition that 'jumps over' the nineteenth century when constructing an account of innovation, dismissing the Victorian period as a time of reactionary conservatism in the writing of lives. These works are highly recommended!