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2016 | 49 | 139-150
Article title

Clockwork novel: the mechanics behind Frances Burney’s prose composition

Content
Title variants
Languages of publication
EN
Abstracts
EN
The paper explores the didactic potential of the novels by the eighteenth-century English writer Frances Burney. To this end, it takes up the metaphor of a life-like automaton – a symbol of human ingenuity and artistic mastery, and a popular object of entertainment in the eighteenth century – and examines its applicability to describe the act of construing a novelistic text. The analysis yields the conclusion that Burney’s experiments with narrative techniques (third-person narration, free indirect discourse, heteroglossia) were employed to ensure the narrator’s authority through the strategic withdrawal of the authorial feminine voice, and were also instrumental in achieving a text which would be both aesthetically pleasing and instructive to the readers. Burney’s didacticism, moreover, proves to be very modern, that is not prescriptively moralizing, but rather training the readers in the exercise of empathy.
Year
Issue
49
Pages
139-150
Physical description
Contributors
  • Uniwersytet Jagielloński
References
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  • Nixon, Cheryl L. “‘Stop a Moment at This Preface’: The Gendered Paratexts of Fielding, Barker, and Haywood.” Journal of Narrative Theory 32.2. (2002): 123–153.
  • Oatley, Keith. Such Stuff as Dreams: The Psychology of Fiction. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011.
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Document Type
Publication order reference
Identifiers
YADDA identifier
bwmeta1.element.desklight-343db1cd-0243-48f5-82be-26a5eefa83f2
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