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Professor Emma Clery 


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Emma Clery is a Professor of English at the University of Southampton.

My latest publications arise from research carried out in the course of a Leverhulme Trust Major Fellowship on ‘Romantic-era Women Writers and the Question of Economic Progress’ (2013-16).

Jane Austen: The Banker’s Sister (Biteback, 2017) marks the launch of the £10 banknote bearing her image by delving into the history of the first Austen banknotes, issued by her brother Henry’s bank business. Henry supported Jane in establishing herself as a novelist; she frequently stayed with him in London and socialised in his circle of financiers. My study reveals how her works were shaped by an acute awareness of the economic scandals, crises and speculations of the Regency era and offers a reappraisal of the political connections and economic interests of the Austen family.

Eighteen Hundred and Eleven: Poetry, Protest and Economic Crisis (Cambridge University Press, 2017) takes a striking episode in Romantic-era culture as the basis for exploring poetry as a medium of political protest. In 1811 England was on the brink of economic collapse and revolution. The veteran poet and campaigner Anna Letitia Barbauld published a prophecy of the British nation reduced to ruins by its refusal to end the interminable war with France, titled Eighteen Hundred and Eleven. This study dispels the myth surrounding the hostile reception of the poem and looks at the way a wide range of writers, including the canonical Romantic poets and a host of journalists from the radical Cobbett to the reactionary Croker, addressed the politics of war and economic crisis. 

I have a number of areas of expertise in the cultural history of the period 1660-1830:

Recent PhD supervision includes:

Karen Tan, ‘The Comfort of Horror and the Ambiguities of Youth: Teenaged Readers of Gothic 1790 to 2010’.

Hatsuyo Shimazaki, ‘Free Indirect Speech in the Work of Jane Austen’.

Jenifer Buckley, ‘The Discourse of the Maternal Imagination in the Long Eighteenth Century’, supported by Faculty Teaching Fellowship.

Marilyn Mallia, ‘The Importance of the Gothic in the Early Novels of George Sand’ (adviser).

Helen Cole, ‘The Illustration of Novels in England 1690-1750’, funded by AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award.

Rachael Pearson, ‘The Gothic Drama of Matthew Gregory Lewis’.

I have previously worked as Research Fellow with the AHRB-funded Corvey Project on Romantic-Era Women’s Writing. In 2005 I came to Southampton as Professor of Eighteenth-Century Literature, with responsibilities for developing the link with Chawton House Library, a centre for the study of early women’s writing with a unique collection of rare books. I teach undergraduate and MA courses in all my research areas, based at Chawton and Southampton. I am a member of the Southampton Centre for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SCECS). Click here for information on the MA in Eighteenth-Century Studies.


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Jane Austen: The Banker’s Sister (Biteback, 2017).

Eighteen Hundred and Eleven: Poetry, Protest and Economic Crisis (Cambridge University Press, 2017).

The Feminization Debate in Eighteenth-Century England: Literature, Commerce and Luxury (Palgrave Macmillan, 2004).

Women’s Gothic from Clara Reeve to Mary Shelley, ‘Writers and Their Work’ series, gen. ed. Isobel Armstrong (Northcote House Press / The British Council, 2000).

The Rise of Supernatural Fiction, 1762-1800 (Cambridge University Press, 1995).

Edited Works

Ed. with Peter Garside and Caroline Franklin, Authorship, Commerce, and the Public: Scenes of Writing 1750-1850 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2002).

Ed. with Robert Miles, Gothic Documents 1700-1820 (Manchester University Press, 2000).

Ed., Ann Radcliffe, The Italian, rev. edn. (Oxford World’s Classics, 1998).

Ed., Horace Walpole, The Castle of Otranto, rev. edn. (Oxford World's Classics, 1996).

Articles and Book Chapters (since 2000)

‘Free Market Feminism? The Political Economy of Women’s Writing,’ in Women's Writing 1660-1830: Feminisms, Fictions and Futures ed. Jennie Batchelor and Gillian Dow (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017).

‘Anna Letitia Barbauld and the Ethics of Free Trade Imperialism,’ in British Romanticism: Criticism and Debates, ed. Mark Canuel (Routledge, 2015), pp. 349-59.

‘Novels of the 1750s’, The Oxford History of the Novel, Volume 2, 1750-1820, ed. Peter Garside and Karen O’Brien (Oxford University Press, 2015), pp. 73-91.

‘Stoic Patriotism in Barbauld’s Political Poems,’ in Anna Letitia Barbauld: New Perspectives, ed. William McCarthy and Olivia Murphy (Bucknell University Press, 2014), pp. 173-94.

‘To dazzle let the Vain design: Alexander Pope’s Portrait Gallery and the Impossibility of Brilliant Women’, in ‘Bluestockings Displayed: Portraiture, Performance and Patronage, 1730-1830’, ed. Elizabeth Eger (Cambridge University Press, 2013), pp. 39-59.

 ‘Jane Austen and Gender’, Cambridge Companion to Jane Austen, ed. Edward Copeland and Juliet McMaster (Cambridge University Press, 2011), pp. 159-75.

‘Horace Walpole, the Strawberry Hill Press, and the Emergence of the Gothic Genre’, Ars & Humanitas, 5:1-2 (2010), pp. 93-112.

‘Women’s Writing and the Luxury Debate’, A History of British Women’s Writing, vol. 4, 1690-1750, ed. Ros Ballaster (Hampshire and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), pp.  40-60.

‘Austen and Masculinity’, A Companion to Jane Austen, ed. Claudia L Johnson and Clara Tuite (Malden, MA, Oxford and Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009), pp. 332-342.

‘Canon-Busting: Undergraduate Research into Romantic-Era Women’s Writing in the Corvey Collection’, in Teaching British Women Writers 1750-1900, ed. Jeanne Moskal and Shannon R. Wooden (Peter Lang, 2004).

‘Engendering the Sheffield Hallam Corvey Project: some Remarks on Women’s Writing and New Literary Histories’, in The Corvey Library and Anglo-German Cultural Exchanges, 1770-1837, ed. Werner Huber (Wilhalm Fink Verlag, 2004), pp. 179-86.

‘The Genesis of Gothic: Sources and Beginnings’, in The Cambridge Companion to Gothic Literature ed. Jerrold Hogle (Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 21-39.

‘Horace Walpole’s ‘The Mysterious Mother and the Impossibility of Female Desire’ in Gothic ed. Fred Botting (Boydell & Brewer, 2001), pp. 23-46.

Professor Emma Clery
Faculty of Arts and Humanities University of Southampton Avenue Campus Highfield Southampton SO17 1BF United Kingdom

Room Number: 65/2039

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