The writings of Ann Julia Hatton (1764–1838), who from 1810 published under the pen-name ‘Ann of Swansea’, reflect changes in the political spirit of her age as it interwove with episodes in her personal history. Though her 1784 collection of verse is conventional in its politics, The Songs of Tammany (1794), a panegyric in praise of the American-Indian ‘Noble Savage’ written during the years she spent in New York, is heated in its denunciation of European colonialism. After she returned to Britain in 1799 and settled in Swansea, her novels Cambrian Pictures (1810) and Guilty or Not Guilty (1822) showed an equivalent radicalism in their depiction of Welsh characters casting off the yoke of subservience to a corrupt Anglicized gentry and demonstrating that an upbringing in Wales instils all the natural virtues as opposed to the artifices of contemporary civilization. In other fictions, however, such as her satire on the townspeople of Gooselake (i.e. Swansea) in Chronicles of an Illustrious House (1816), Welsh ‘Noble Savages’ have befooled themselves by succumbing to the allure of corrupting sophistications. This paper explores these transitions in Ann of Swansea’s fictional representations of Wales. Continue reading
Jane Aaron is Emeritus Professor of Literature at the University of South Wales. Her publications include A Double Singleness: Gender and the Writings of Charles and Mary Lamb (1991), Pur fel y Dur: Y Gymraes yn Llên Menywod y Bedwaredd Ganrif ar Bymtheg (Pure as steel: The Welshwoman in nineteenth-century women’s writing, 1998), Nineteenth-Century Women’s Writing in Wales (2007), Welsh Gothic (2013), and the co-edited volumes, Out of the Margins: Women’s Studies in the Nineties (1991), Our Sisters’ Land: The Changing Identities of Women in Wales (1994), Postcolonial Wales (2005) and Gendering Border Studies (2010). She is also the general editor of Honno Press’s English-language Welsh Women’s Classics series.
Article: ‘Saxon, Think not All Is Won’
I ‘Few poetic careers can have been more thoroughly devoted to the construction of national identity than was that of Felicia Hemans’s, writes Tricia Lootens, in her contribution to Angela Leighton’s Victorian Women Poets: A … Continue reading