Constructing a Portrait of the Early-Modern Woman Writer for Eighteenth-Century Female Readers: George Ballard's Memoirs of Several Ladies of Great Britain (1752)


  • Begoña Lasa Álvarez


George Ballard’s Memoirs of Several Ladies of Great Britain (1752) is of special relevance to the study of early-modern women writers and their subsequent reception, since it contains details of the lives and writings of a considerable number of these women. This type of publication responded to the demand for educative works in general, and particularly to a growing female audience. Thus its chief goal was to provide readers with exemplary models of behaviour. Within the theoretical framework of women’s studies and literary biography, the biographies of these women writers are analysed in order to determine whether their lives and careers as writers were in keeping with the didactic purpose of such texts, and the extent to which the fact of being women shaped their biographical portraits.


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