Recent debates about the Bluestockings have focused on the lives, writings and political opinions of the Bluestockings themselves. This article argues that the significance of the Bluestockings, however, lies in the ways in which they were figured in public representations. It examines the tradition of satires of the Bluestockings, showing how this tradition both continued earlier traditions of satire against the learned lady and invented the comic figure of the literary hostess. The satires’ crude attacks on intellectual women ultimately raised the profile of the learned lady, a figure whose incipient feminism bore no necessary relation to the historical Bluestockings themselves.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Literature and Literary Theory
- Gender Studies