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Writers, Readers, and ReputationsLiterary Life in Britain 1870-1918$
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Philip Waller

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199541201

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199541201.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 October 2021

The Star Turn

The Star Turn

(p.364) 9 The Star Turn
Writers, Readers, and Reputations

Philip Waller (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Another aspect of writers' celebrity status was the hero worship they attracted. Poets such as Swinburne and Tennyson were famed for their dramatic readings. Literary tourism developed, with fans visiting authors' birthplaces, homes, or haunts. Many moaned about the invasion of privacy but many more cultivated attention. Autograph collectors pursued famous writers, who were also the recipients of a vast and varied correspondence arising out of their work. Fans named children and pet animals after favourite writers or their characters. Aspirant writers would seek out well-known writers in the hope of gaining encouragement and endorsement; but well-known writers equally abased themselves before the more distinguished, by signing memorial addresses or celebrating anniversaries. Writers featured here include J. M. Barrie, A. C. Benson, Samuel Butler, Hall Caine, Lewis Carroll, G. K. Chesterton, Conan Doyle, Thomas Hardy, Silas K. Hocking, George Meredith, Alice Meynell, and H. G. Wells.

Keywords:   celebrity status, fans, autograph collectors, correspondence

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