Héritage des romans 'by a lady': de l'école Burney à l'idéologie romantique

Translated title of the contribution: Considering the Legacy of Novels 'by a Lady': from the Burney School to Romantic Ideology

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While Frances Burney's novels really re-entered the literary canon from the end of the 1980s, the novels by a lady that were inspired by them (1778-1820) remain in obscurity. Burney's reputation is a testament to the fluidity of the canon and the many criteria that condition its access, such as the choice of a publisher, the critical attention paid to a work when it is published, or its subsequent inclusion in anthologies. This article examines how Burney's narrative influence on these anonymous novels affects their long-term reception. It seeks to define how these novels excluded from the literary canon can enrich our understanding of fiction from the Romantic era to the twenty-first centurye century. An analysis of the vocabulary used in critical journals reveals two phases, one corresponding to a period that includes the publications of Evelina and Cecilia, and the other those of Camilla and The Wanderer. Indeed, only one review of a novel by a lady mentioned Burney after 1791, the pivotal year of the publication of The Romance of The Forest, which heralded the arrival of successive narrative models (Radcliffe, Edgeworth, More, Scott). This study shows that the competition of narrative genres and the scarcity of gendered signatures, less in vogue after 1800, contributed to the oblivion of these novels. Considered minor, they nevertheless embody the culmination of a writing tradition of the "Burney School" and form a community of works imbued with what has been called, a posteriori, the "Romantic ideology".
Translated title of the contributionConsidering the Legacy of Novels 'by a Lady': from the Burney School to Romantic Ideology
Original languageFrench
Pages (from-to)35-49
Number of pages15
JournalCarnet1718 Hypothèses
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sept 2022


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