The Autobiographical Impulse: A History, 1780 to the Present

When:21 Oct 2014, 12:30pm - 1:45pm
Venue:Morven Brown 310 (map ref C20)
Who:Professor Barbara Caine, University of Sydney
Barbara Caine.jpg

History Seminar Series

The title of this talk comes from the project I am currently engaged on which seeks to trace the history of autobiography over this period, focusing on the different groups of people who wrote autobiographies and on the ways in which the form changed as working class men, middle and then working-class women, colonized peoples and victims of various forms of dispossession and trauma came to write autobiographies. In doing so, they sought not so much to delineate their unique individual qualities as to use their own life story to illustrate the experiences and sufferings of the particular group whom they wished to represent. The paper will combine some general discussion of this broad approach with a specific focus on a group of women in inter-War Britain, looking at the ways in which they sought to broach intimate life in new ways and at the links between their autobiographies, their feminism and their desire to forge new kinds of marital and familial relationships.

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