Catalogue


Plots of enlightenment : education and the novel in eighteenth-century England /
Richard A. Barney.
imprint
Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, c1999.
description
xii, 402 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.
ISBN
0804729786 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, c1999.
isbn
0804729786 (cloth : alk. paper)
catalogue key
3187251
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Richard A. Barney is Associate Professor of English at the University of Oklahoma
Excerpts
Flap Copy
Plots of Enlightenment explores the emergence of the English novel during the early 1700s as a preeminent form of popular education at a time when educators were defining a new kind of "modern" English citizenship for both men and women. This new individual was imagined neither as the free, self-determined figure of early modern liberalism or republicanism, nor, at the other extreme, as the product of a nearly totalized disciplinary regimen. Instead, this new citizen materialized from the tensile process of what the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu calls "regulated improvisation," a strategy of performed individual identity that combines both social orchestration and individual agency. This book considers how the period's diverse forms of educational writing (including chapbooks, conduct books, and philosophical treatises) and the most innovative educational institutions of the age (such as charity schools, working schools, and proposed academies for young women) produced a shared concept of improvised identity also shaped by the early novel's pedagogical agenda. The model of improvised subjectivity contributed to new ways of imagining English individuality as both a private and public entity; it also empowered women authors, both educators and novelists, to transform traditional ideals of femininity in forming their own protofeminist versions of enlightened female identity. While offering a comprehensive account of the novel's educational status during the Enlightenment, Plots of Enlightenment focuses particularly on the first half of the eighteenth century, when novelists such as Daniel Defoe, Eliza Haywood, and Charlotte Lennox were first exploring concepts of fictional character based on educational and moral improvisation. A close examination of these authors' work illustrates further that by the 1750s, the improvisational impulse in England had forged the first perceptible outlines of the fictional subgenre later called the novel of education or the Bildungsroman. This book is the first study of its kind to account for the complex interplay between the individualist and collectivist protocols of early modern fiction, with an eye toward articulating a comprehensive description of socialization and literary form that can accommodate the similarities and differences in the works of both male and female writers.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2000-04:
In this learned and readable work, Barney (Univ. of Oklahoma) examines Enlightenment educational theory as a source for narrative form in the early novel. Works such as John Locke's Some Thoughts concerning Education negotiate between contending ideals of individual autonomy and social discipline. A consequent literary "improvised subjectivity" is evident in works emphasizing educational development of the protagonist, such as Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe. By mid-century, woman authors such as Charlotte Lennox (The Female Quixote) and Eliza Haywood (Betsy Thoughtless) were exploring issues of female development in a quest for social entitlement and identity, with mixed success. Barney also looks briefly at how Lockean pedagogy influences the bildungsroman through the 18th century and into the 19th, with concluding reference to garden imagery and reinvention of a female Eden. The author's scholarship is impressive--and the book is recommended for graduate students and researchers in educational as well as literary theory. H. Benoist; Our Lady of the Lake University of San Antonio
Reviews
Review Quotes
"[A] well-written and intelligent study . . . .critically convincing and highly readable."--British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies
"A wonderful book, full of deep learning, critical brilliance, and provocative cultural analysis." Carol Houlihan Flynn, Tufts University
"A wonderful book, full of deep learning, critical brilliance, and provocative cultural analysis." --Carol Houlihan Flynn, Tufts University
"Establishes more flexible and generous ways of thinking about this subject than those offered in earlier works in the field. . . . The body of Barney's book is occupied by some wonderfully alert and sophisticated close readings of key works of pedagogical theory."Times Literary Supplement
"Establishes more flexible and generous ways of thinking about this subject than those offered in earlier works in the field. . . . The body of Barney's book is occupied by some wonderfully alert and sophisticated close readings of key works of pedagogical theory."--Times Literary Supplement
"Establishes more flexible and generous ways of thinking about this subject than those offered in earlier works in the field. . . . The body of Barney's book is occupied by some wonderfully alert and sophisticated close readings of key works of pedagogical theory."-- Times Literary Supplement
"[A] well-written and intelligent study . . . .critically convincing and highly readable."British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies
"[A] well-written and intelligent study . . . .critically convincing and highly readable."-- British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies
This item was reviewed in:
Reference & Research Book News, February 2000
Choice, April 2000
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Back Cover Copy
"Establishes more flexible and generous ways of thinking about this subject than those offered in earlier works in the field. . . . The body of Barney's book is occupied by some wonderfully alert and sophisticated close readings of key works of pedagogical theory."Times Literary Supplement "A wonderful book, full of deep learning, critical brilliance, and provocative cultural analysis." Carol Houlihan Flynn, Tufts University
Back Cover Copy
"Establishes more flexible and generous ways of thinking about this subject than those offered in earlier works in the field. . . . The body of Barney's book is occupied by some wonderfully alert and sophisticated close readings of key works of pedagogical theory."--Times Literary Supplement "A wonderful book, full of deep learning, critical brilliance, and provocative cultural analysis." --Carol Houlihan Flynn, Tufts University
Unpaid Annotation
Via analysis of the impact of educational writings of the period on the early 18th century novel for evidence of a new type of identity emerging in Enlightenment England, Barney (English, U. of Oklahoma) extends the philosophical ideas of John Locke to the developing interplay between narrative voice and implied readership. Female as well as male authors were empowered in "improvisational" fictions such as Lennox's The Female Quixote and Defoe's Robinson Crusoe.
Bowker Data Service Summary
Richard Barney explores the emergence of the English novel during the early 1700s as a preeminent form of popular education at a time when educators were defining a new kind of modern English citizenship for both men and women.
Main Description
Plots of Enlightenmentexplores the emergence of the English novel during the early 1700s as a preeminent form of popular education at a time when educators were defining a new kind of "modern" English citizenship for both men and women. This new individual was imagined neither as the free, self-determined figure of early modern liberalism or republicanism, nor, at the other extreme, as the product of a nearly totalized disciplinary regimen. Instead, this new citizen materialized from the tensile process of what the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu calls "regulated improvisation," a strategy of performed individual identity that combines both social orchestration and individual agency. This book considers how the period's diverse forms of educational writing (including chapbooks, conduct books, and philosophical treatises) and the most innovative educational institutions of the age (such as charity schools, working schools, and proposed academies for young women) produced a shared concept of improvised identity also shaped by the early novel's pedagogical agenda. The model of improvised subjectivity contributed to new ways of imagining English individuality as both a private and public entity; it also empowered women authors, both educators and novelists, to transform traditional ideals of femininity in forming their own protofeminist versions of enlightened female identity. While offering a comprehensive account of the novel's educational status during the Enlightenment, Plots of Enlightenmentfocuses particularly on the first half of the eighteenth century, when novelists such as Daniel Defoe, Eliza Haywood, and Charlotte Lennox were first exploring concepts of fictional character based on educational and moral improvisation. A close examination of these authors' work illustrates further that by the 1750s, the improvisational impulse in England had forged the first perceptible outlines of the fictional subgenre later called the novel of education or the Bildungsroman.This book is the first study of its kind to account for the complex interplay between the individualist and collectivist protocols of early modern fiction, with an eye toward articulating a comprehensive description of socialization and literary form that can accommodate the similarities and differences in the works of both male and female writers.
Main Description
Plots of Enlightenmentexplores the emergence of the English novel during the early 1700s as a preeminent form of popular education at a time when educators were defining a new kind of "modern" English citizenship for both men and women. This new individual was imagined neither as the free, self-determined figure of early modern liberalism or republicanism, nor, at the other extreme, as the product of a nearly totalized disciplinary regimen. Instead, this new citizen materialized from the tensile process of what the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu calls "regulated improvisation," a strategy of performed individual identity that combines both social orchestration and individual agency. This book considers how the period's diverse forms of educational writing (including chapbooks, conduct books, and philosophical treatises) and the most innovative educational institutions of the age (such as charity schools, working schools, and proposed academies for young women) produced a shared concept of improvised identity also shaped by the early novel's pedagogical agenda. The model of improvised subjectivity contributed to new ways of imagining English individuality as both a private and public entity; it also empowered women authors, both educators and novelists, to transform traditional ideals of femininity in forming their own protofeminist versions of enlightened female identity. While offering a comprehensive account of the novel's educational status during the Enlightenment,Plots of Enlightenmentfocuses particularly on the first half of the eighteenth century, when novelists such as Daniel Defoe, Eliza Haywood, and Charlotte Lennox were first exploring concepts of fictional character based on educational and moral improvisation. A close examination of these authors' work illustrates further that by the 1750s, the improvisational impulse in England had forged the first perceptible outlines of the fictional subgenre later called the novel of education or theBildungsroman.This book is the first study of its kind to account for the complex interplay between the individualist and collectivist protocols of early modern fiction, with an eye toward articulating a comprehensive description of socialization and literary form that can accommodate the similarities and differences in the works of both male and female writers.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrationsp. xi
Introduction: Early Modern Identity and the Rise of Improvisational Fictionsp. 1
Lockean Education, Narrative Metaphor, and the Inflections of Genderp. 37
Theatrical Education and the Thickening of Plotp. 81
Pedagogical Politics and the Idea of Public Privacyp. 123
Robinson Crusoe, Education, and Schizophrenic Narrativep. 206
Romancing the Home: The Female Quixote, Betsy Thoughtless, and the Dream of Feminine Empirep. 255
Conclusion: The Novel of Education and (Re) Visions of Edenp. 301
Notesp. 323
Works Citedp. 363
Indexp. 385
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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