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    Farese, Carlotta 2009. The translator and the fairies: Christoph Martin Wieland’sOberonand the British Romantics. European Romantic Review, Vol. 20, Issue. 5, p. 629.

  • Print publication year: 2009
  • Online publication date: May 2009

8 - France, Germany, America

from Part II - Geographies: The Scenes of Literary Life
Self-consciousness about being English can be traced very early in the national literature. It is often hard to be sure whether the reference is to a political, racial, social or linguistic category, or to some unspoken measure of each. The predominance of France and Germany and eventually of America as the Romantic period's most commonly discussed foreign places does not then reflect any single or self-evident set of historical circumstances. America and its literature were throughout the Romantic period somewhat minor objects of attention in British literary circles. The effort at legitimating a national literary language gave writers and intellectuals an ideal form for a German language. Toward the end of the eighteenth century contemporary German literature began to feature in its own right in British literary circles. For many British readers and critics before about 1820, American culture and literature was merely an accidental extension of an English tradition, they read what we write, their writers are our writers.
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The Cambridge History of English Romantic Literature
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