English Language and Literature ETDs

Publication Date

Summer 7-14-2019


My dissertation traces a term I call the “chaotic domestic” in the writing of a collection of eighteenth-century women laboring-class writers: Mary Barber, Mary Collier, Mary Leapor, Ann Yearsley, and Janet Little. The chaotic domestic in the hands of these writers is multi-layered and affect-driven, focusing as they do on issues regarding nation, class, and gender. As both a poetic trope and the seeming natural and dynamic state of the domestic sphere, the image of the domestic that this set of writers represents and defines is turbulent, unruly, and one that deals with the tangled web of local and global, public and private, gendered and classist identity politics. Most importantly, I seek to demonstrate how the chaotic domestic serves as something these writers do to subvert class and gender systems that affect their public and private lives.

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First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Gail Houston

Second Committee Member

Dr. Carolyn Woodward

Third Committee Member

Dr. Pamela Cheek

Fourth Committee Member

Dr. Donna Landry




laboring-class poetry, women writers, eighteenth century, eighteenth-century poetry, domesticity, domestic, Ireland, England, Scotland, affect

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