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This said, however, it would be remiss for a review of this book not to conclude by saying that Bruckrnann has made a passionate and thoughtprovoking contribution to previous readings of the Scriblerians, creating a kind of group biography of interconnections and inspiration that sheds new light on both this particular association of writers and others whom they and their work powerfully influenced. (cATHERINE N. PARKE) lsobel Gnrndy, editor. Lady Mtlry Wortley Montagu: Romance Writings Clarendon Press 1.996. 276. $86.oo Isabel Grundy's edition of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu's Romance Writings is a significant contribution to the study of women's writing in the eighteenth century. This collection of short fiction shows Montagu's adept use of hybrid genres, including the picaresque, romance, and fairy-tale. Grundy's informative introduction and helpful notes contextualize these works within eighteenth-century culture and her knowledge of Montagu's life illuminates many elen\ents of the stories. Most of the tales in this collection were influenced by the French romances in vogue in the seventeenth century, and by other French fiction. Grundy skilfully links Montagu's interest in seventeenth-century French preciosite with the feminist content in these tales. The stories are riveting reading. 'lndamora to lindamira: Her Life Writ in 5 Letters,' written when Montagu was fourteen, depicts the often startling twists and turns of a heroine's courtship. Montagu uses mythology to good effect in 'The Sultan's Tale.' Flora and Diana devise a magical test of chastity of the women at Queen Emma's court, and Venus (at least partially) foils their scheme. Two tales set at the court of Louis XIV, 'Mademoiselle de Conde' and 'Louisa/ follow the exploits of the seductive Duke D'Enguien, and the various women who become entangled with him. The extraordinary 'Princess Docile' describes the childhood of a woman completely compliant with the will of others, and her subsequent misadventures at the hands of corrupt or misguided individuals. Here Montagu's powers as a satirist are at their highest; her targets include religious piety, gender relations, political power, and self-indulgent tutors who fail to educate women properly. The only non-fiction piece in the collection, the 'Italian Memoir.' is a nightmarish account of Montagu's decade in Brescia, and her unfortunate dealings with the fraudulent Count Ugolina Palazzi. This narrative will undoubtedly be of value to the many scholars now investigating British travel on the continent. With the exception of Jlndamora to Lindamira,' published in 1994 by Juvenilia Press, this material has never appeared in print. Grundy includes an especially welcome, brief textual note for each selection, and, in the case 466 LETTERS IN CANADA 1997 of tales written in French or Italian, provides appendices of the original text, highlighting phrases which proved difficult to translate. These tales almost certainly could be used for teaching as well as scholarship. rt might be intriguing, for example, to place some of these shorter romances alongside Charlotte Lennox's The Female Quixote. Montagu, like Lennox, has a great deal to say about women's susceptibility to romantic fancy, as well as sympathy for the fascinations of romance. These tales could help accustom students to literary conventions they will encounter in longer novels of the period. As the work of a widely read and well-travelled literary figure, they provide a fresh perspective on eighteenth -century culture, and should find an eager audience in anyone interested in the period. (CARRIE HINTZ) Frans DeBruyn. The Literary Genres of Edmund Burke: The Political Uses of Lilerary Form. Clarendon Press 1996. xii, 318. $86.oo In The Literary Genres of Edmund Burke: The Political Uses of Literary Fonn, Frans De Bruyn has opened several new walks with new prospects for exploring Burke. Starting from the observation that in the eighteenth cenh.uy no boLmdary separated 'literary' from 'political' writing (both were 'writing,' i.e., 'literature'), DeBruyn shows Burke's political use of available literary genres/ from tragedy to epic, satire to georgic. Burke's writings belong to such familiar eighteenth-century political genres as the speech, the report, the letter, thoughts, considerations, reflections, with one youthful vindication. When constructing his arguments, however, he exploits conventions and procedures...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 465-466
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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