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Ethnology and Biography: The Case of the Brownings

From: Biography
Volume 26, Number 2, Spring 2003
pp. 261-282 | 10.1353/bio.2003.0053


The poets Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning have been subjected to a good deal of speculation about their ethnic origins. In tracing the history of this speculation, this article attempts to highlight some of the potential difficulties associated with a renewed attention to genealogy and ethnicity in contemporary biographical writing.

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