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Rethinking Surrender: Elizabeth Inchbald and the 'Catholic Novel'

Kramer, Kaley (2015) Rethinking Surrender: Elizabeth Inchbald and the 'Catholic Novel'. In: Barnard, Teresa, (ed.) British Women and the Intellectual World in the Long Eighteenth Century. Abingdon, Routledge, pp. 87-106

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Abstract

Published in the 1790s, but begun considerably earlier during the promise and upheaval of the 1770s and 80s, Elizabeth Inchbald’s A Simple Story (1791) negotiates the challenging terrain of religious difference at the end of the ‘Age of Enlightenment’. Inchbald’s experience of English Catholicism and her wide-ranging literary and cultural network inform her carefully-wrought narrative, which displays both the fond familiarity of personal experience and a clear sense of the complexity of religious doctrine and difference. A Simple Story is certainly not a sentimental defence of Catholicism – English or Roman – but neither does it attack Catholicism as threatening and foreign. Instead, Inchbald uses fiction to participate in debates about the future of religious freedom in Britain.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: "This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge in British Women and the Intellectual World in the Long Eighteenth Century on 14/07/2015, available online: https://www.routledge.com/products/isbn/9781472437457”
Status: Published
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0441 Literary History
School/Department: School of Humanities, Religion & Philosophy
URI: http://ray.yorksj.ac.uk/id/eprint/219

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