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Irish Novelists and the Victorian Age$
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James H. Murphy

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199596997

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199596997.001.0001

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The Lives of the Irish Novelists

The Lives of the Irish Novelists

(p.245) 11 The Lives of the Irish Novelists
Irish Novelists and the Victorian Age

James H. Murphy

Oxford University Press

Comparisons can be made of the ways in which Irish novelists represented themselves in semi-autobiographical fiction and were represented in appeals for grants from the Royal Literary Fund. Hannah Lynch's semi-autobiographical fiction acknowledges the constructedness of all forms of story, whether fictional or biographical. The letters in her support to the Fund are, in their way, just as constructed in the view they present of her, as a dependent woman with a literary talent that did not please the popular market. Charlotte Riddell's A Struggle for Fame is a semi-autobiographical account of a woman's efforts to achieve literary fame and fortune. Those who wrote to the Fund on her behalf around 1900 presented her as a then-forgotten writer of quality who had not benefited from the publishing system and was now ill and in need of assistance. Celebrities, such as James Sherdian Knowles, Rosina Bulwer Lytton, and Lady Colin Campbell also used fiction though to enhance their public position.

Keywords:   Royal Literary Fund, autobiographical fiction, Charlotte Riddell, Hannah Lynch, Rosina Bulwer Lytton, Lady Colin Campbell

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