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Frances Burney's Camilla: "To Print My Grand Work ... by Subscription"

Emma E. Pink
Eighteenth-Century Studies
Vol. 40, No. 1 (Fall, 2006), pp. 51-68
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30053491
Page Count: 18
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Frances Burney's Camilla: "To Print My Grand Work ... by Subscription"
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Abstract

Critics have tended to view Frances Burney's authorial activities as evidence of her diffidence as a cultural producer. in fact, a closer examination of her publishing history, especially her management of the subscription publication of her third novel, Camilla, reveals quite the contrary. in addition to being an accomplished novelist, playwright, letter writer, and diarist, Burney was also a skillful negotiator who understood the economic and aesthetic value of her literary productions, and worked hard to obtain what she felt to be appropriate remuneration for them. Not only was Burney willing to engage with the material aspects of cultural production, but she was sensitive to the subtleties of exchange dynamics operating during the time in which she was writing. By focusing on her publishing history, we are able to trace the arc of her professionalization, and come to understand the ways in which Burney negotiated the complexities of the literary field.

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