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Women, Periodicals and Print Culture in Britain, 1830s-1900sThe Victorian Period$
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Alexis Easley, Clare Gill, and Beth Rodgers

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474433907

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474433907.001.0001

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Reading Poet Amy Levy through Victorian Newspapers

Reading Poet Amy Levy through Victorian Newspapers

(p.456) 28 Reading Poet Amy Levy through Victorian Newspapers
Women, Periodicals and Print Culture in Britain, 1830s-1900s

Linda K. Hughes

Edinburgh University Press

In this essay, Linda K. Hughes casts light on Amy Levy’s (1861–89) dexterous placement of her poetry in carefully selected newspapers throughout the 1880s. Levy is perhaps best known for her novels and three published volumes of poetry, as well as for her associations with various intellectual and political coteries in fin de siècle London; however, she was, in fact, ‘entrepreneurial’ in her dealings with the daily and weekly newspapers she published in throughout the 1880s, often ‘submitting in a verse medium that had already found favor with the editors’ (p. 459). The significance of media publishing contexts for Levy’s career has been underplayed in scholarship of the author, yet, as Hughes cautions, to obscure this dimension of her authorship is ‘to miss a crucial dimension of her work, even to distort her achievement and her engagement with the publishing world’ (p. 456). What emerges from this account is an entirely new perspective on Levy as a savvy and strategic newspaper poet, with a perspicacious understanding of poetry’s relationship with ‘audience, placement, and opportunity in the Victorian press’ (p.457).

Keywords:   Amy Levy, poetry, newspapers, newspaper poetry, fin de siècle

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