The topicality of the issues raised in these three essays shows how recent technological developments, and changes in the political and commercial climate of our own time, can bring Romantic-period
debates over the role and status of the author into sharper focus.
This book, then, claims a significant influence of literary representations and philosophical discussions of the blind on Romantic-period
writing, but does not claim that this is a matter of the frequent occurrence of the image of the blind visionary used in a straightforward fashion.
What Tilar Mazzeo has done is to show how potentially misleading this is by a searching examination of how plagiarism was defined and evaluated around the turn of the eighteenth century--demonstrating 'the disjunction between how Romantic-period
writers engaged with issues of literary borrowing and how history has come to mythologize them' (p.
I seek to track its Romantic-period
moment of production and reception, and to read this against the story of Austen's canonical reproduction" (3).
They repeat or continue the historicizing practices of the Romantic-period
This discussion serves both to locate a Romantic-period
articulation of an interpersonal spiral and to establish the scene of reading as intensively interpersonal.
Although Wordsworth and his Prelude have cameo appearances in Treadwell's book, he warns his reader that the autobiographical epic "does not fit at all" into the complex of texts he is exploring "for the simple reason that it is not a Romantic-period
publication" (viii); its comments on selfhood, nonetheless, are deployed in Chapter Four along with Carlyle's Sartor Resartus, Wollstonecraft's Letters Written During a Short Residence in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark, and other less canonical works to suggest the gains of reading "autobiography at the intersection of private and public spheres" (123).