MSt English (1830-1914), University of Oxford – 2015-6
BA (Hons) English Language & Literature, University of Birmingham – 2011-14, First class
Mediated Expression: Self-Censorship in Nineteenth-Century Women’s Manuscripts
Dr Clara Dawson and Dr Michael Sanders
My research explores how Victorian female expression is negotiated through prescriptions on behaviour, resulting in mediated expression. This both sub-consciously and consciously affects the way a text is produced and can be observed within manuscripts and post-publication editions. I explore how mediated expression manifests itself in the works of middle-class female writers, including Charlotte Brontë and Elizabeth Barrett Browning, by analysing markings, crossings out and excisions on their manuscripts, and examining the interpretive implications for the literary text. I argue that deletions and excisions, which could be read as instances of self-censorship, in fact allow women to negotiate their expression and empower them to speak.
Victorian literature, manuscript studies, Victorian women writers, gender studies, Charlotte Brontë
Hanks, Lucy, ‘Self-Censorship and the (Im)possibilities of Female Representation in Charlotte Brontë’s Villette’, Birmingham Journal of Language and Literature, 7, (2015), 10-19.