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Self-consciousness and Childhood in the Long Nineteenth Century

Chapman, Amanda (2015) Self-consciousness and Childhood in the Long Nineteenth Century. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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My dissertation argues that self-consciousness should take its place beside innocence and precocity as one of a constellation of terms crucial for understanding how paradigms of childhood and children’s literature developed side by side. By focusing on attitudes towards children and self-consciousness, I illuminate the ways in which discourses for and about children affected not only children’s culture but also British culture at large. My chapters examine the positive value placed on self-consciousness in late-eighteenth and early-nineteenth-century children’s literature; the reconceptualization of childhood and self-consciousness by Romantic writers, who attached a new anxiety about self-consciousness to the figure of the child; the incredible popularity of Peter Pan, which results from the eternal boy’s combination of unselfconsciousness and theatricality; and the ways in which the British public school ethic of good form as well as the literary tradition of the school story reflect increasingly stringent demands that children be unselfconscious.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Chapman, Amandaalp116@pitt.eduALP116
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBoone, Troyboone@pitt.eduBOONE
Committee MemberGubar,
Committee MemberGlazener, Nancyglazener@pitt.eduGLAZENER
Committee MemberBrylowe, Thoratpb14@pitt.eduTPB14
Committee MemberMcConachie, Brucebamcco@pitt.eduBAMCCO
Date: 17 June 2015
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 13 April 2015
Approval Date: 17 June 2015
Submission Date: 16 April 2015
Access Restriction: 5 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 5 years.
Number of Pages: 216
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > English
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: self-consciousness, children's literature, long nineteenth century, British literature, childhood studies
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2015 18:49
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2020 05:15


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