Chapter

Literary Offerings

Jill Rappoport

in Giving Women

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780199772605
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919000 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199772605.003.0001
Literary Offerings

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Literary Studies (19th Century)

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

Literary annuals from the 1820s and ’30s not only shaped the way women imagined giving by modeling scenes and styles of exchange but, by cultivating a larger ethos of generosity for this publishing enterprise, also positioned readers as gift recipients, placing them under the burdens and benefits of gift exchange. As gifts, annuals created a reading community and urged that community to engage in reciprocal efforts—either by passing along the gift of the annual itself or by engaging in the other kinds of exchange (charitable, abolitionist) it promoted. However, their focus on reciprocity limits the communities they endorse; the narratives direct readers’ sympathies away from less-fortunate recipients and back toward peer relationships with donors. Annuals are thus a key site for exploring how women’s literature helped to construct, not just represent, the giving subjects and networks that this book explores.

Keywords: annual; Christmas; Mary Shelley; gift; abolition; Forget Me Not; Friendship’s Offering; Keepsake; Liberty Bell; Amulet

Chapter.  10074 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.