Essay about Anna Barbauld

Essay about Anna Barbauld

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The Romantic period, like many periods that antecede it, produced a plethora of timely writers whose works display controversial viewpoints on the issues that England faced during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. While women writers were beginning to gain popularity and a place in literature, many female writers during this time remained unnoticed. As prolific as the Romantic period was in literature, England faced several harsh ordeals such as the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars, and the financial hardships that occurred as a result of militant turmoil. However, not only did British participation in the wars spark numerous political and revolutionary outbursts, but participation in the slave trade also sparked controversy. Many writers, both men and women, took radical approaches in their works to discuss their reactions and frustrations with the changes and ordeals that faced the British population. Anna Barbauld and Mary Wollstonecraft, two of the most controversial progressive women’s writers of the time, produced several works that portrayed their views and reactions toward England’s political changes. While Barbauld and Wollstonecraft both produced effective feminist and imperialist poetry, Barbauld produced more radical texts about feminism and British imperialism. More specifically, Barbauld’s radical views are best seen in the “Epistle to William Wilberforce,” “Eighteen Hundred and Eleven,” and “The Rights of Woman.”
First and foremost, Barbauld’s “Epistle to William Wilberforce” is an effective radical text about imperialism. There is more than one reason this poem identifies as a radical text; yet, the major reason is due to her blatant attack on British involvement in the slave trade. Barbaul...


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...uld, Anna. “Eighteen Hundred and Eleven.” London: J. Johnson & Co., 1812. A Celebration of Women Writers. Web. 1 Dec 2013.
Bradshaw, Penny. “The Limits of Barbauld’s Feminism Re-reading the Rights of Women.” European Romantic Review 16.1 (2005): pp 23-37. Accademic Search Complete. Web. Accessed 1 Dec 2012.
Crocco, Francesco. "The Colonial Subtext of Anna Letitia Barbauld's Eighteen Hundred and Eleven." Wordsworth Circle 41.2 (2010): 91-94. Academic SerarchComplete. Accessed 1 Dec 2013.
Lynch, Deidre Shauna, and Stillinger, Jack, eds. “Introduction.” The Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Romantic Period, 9th ed. Vol. D. New York: WW. Norton, 2012. pp 3-10. Print.
Lynch, Deidre Shauna and Stillinger, Jack, eds. “Anna Barbauld.” The Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Romantic Period, 9th ed. Vol. D. WW. Norton: New York, 2012. pg. 30-45. Print.


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