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“No Woman, Much Less a Woman of Fortune, is Ever Fit to Be Her Own Mistress”: Gender, Wealth, and Agency in Inheritance Novels from the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries
Law & Literature Pub Date : 2021-04-07 , DOI: 10.1080/1535685x.2021.1902636
Beth Cortese, Julie Hastrup-Markussen, Ross Deans Kristensen-McLachlan

Abstract, This article compares the agency of heiresses with that of male heirs in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century novels focused on inheritance to investigate whether heiresses faced more restrictions on their financial and personal freedom compared with other characters from the period due to their fortune. We test James Thompson’s claim that “inheritance is enabling or authorizing for male protagonists and disabling for female protagonists” using computational analysis of a corpus of twenty-nine novels and combine our results with close reading of the novels from our corpus. We found that the representation of heiresses’ and heirs’ agency varies according to genre. Heiresses had more agency than expected, this was especially the case for heiresses in gothic fiction. We noticed a decline in the agency of male heirs in the nineteenth century compared with the eighteenth century, while the agency of other character types such as unmoneyed characters appears to increase.



中文翻译:

“没有女人,更是一个有钱的女人,永远都不适合成为自己的情妇”:十八,十九世纪传承小说中的性别,财富和代理

摘要,本文将18世纪和19世纪以继承为重点的小说中继承人的代理权与男性继承人的代理权进行了比较,以调查继承人与该时期的其他人物相比,由于财产的原因,继承人的财务和人身自由是否受到更多限制。我们使用对29部小说的语料库的计算分析来检验詹姆斯·汤普森(James Thompson)的主张:“继承是对男性主角的启用或授权,对于女性主角的禁用或禁用”,并将我们的研究结果与对我们主体的小说的细读结合起来。我们发现,继承人和继承人代理机构的代表根据类型而有所不同。继承人的代理权超出了预期,尤其是哥特小说中的继承人。

更新日期:2021-04-08
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