© 2020

Charlotte Brontë, Embodiment and the Material World

  • Justine Pizzo
  • Eleanor Houghton

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Justine Pizzo, Eleanor Houghton
    Pages 1-23
  3. Brontë’s Bodies

  4. Narrative Objects

  5. The Power of Things

  6. Printed Matter

  7. Back Matter
    Pages 253-258

About this book


'This is a wonderful collection which explores issues of materiality and embodiment across a fascinating range of areas. Drawing on the expertise of museum professionals and historians of the book as well as that of literary critics, it offers new insights into Brontë’s modes of composition and the forms of physicality in her fiction. It also answers questions you never thought to ask: how did those moccasins end up in West Yorkshire?'

–Sally Shuttleworth, Professor of English Literature, University of Oxford, UK, and author of Charlotte Brontë and Victorian Psychology. 


Comprising nine original essays by specialists in material culture, book history,

literary criticism, and curatorial and archival studies, this co-edited volume

addresses a wide range of Brontë’s writing—from vignettes composed during her

teenage years (“The Tea Party” and “The Secret”) to completed novels (The

Professor, Jane Eyre, Shirley, and Villette) and unfinished works (“Ashworth” and

“Emma”). In bringing to life the surprising array of embodied experiences that

shaped Brontë’s creative practice (from writing to book-making, painting, and

drawing), Charlotte Brontë, Embodiment and the Material World forges new

connections between historical, material, and textual approaches to the author’s



Charlotte Bronte Material studies Victorian culture Object studies Nineteenth-century studies

Editors and affiliations

  • Justine Pizzo
    • 1
  • Eleanor Houghton
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of HumanitiesUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK
  2. 2.Faculty of HumanitiesUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK

About the editors

Justine Pizzo is a Lecturer in English at the University of Southampton, UK. Her book

project, provisionally titled “The Character of Climate: Woman and Atmosphere

in Victorian Fiction,” examines how aerial climates shape female characterization

in mid-nineteenth and early twentieth-century novels. Her essays on Charlotte

Brontë have appeared in PMLA and in a volume on Climate and Literature (ed. Johns-Putra,

2019) published by Cambridge University Press.


Eleanor Houghton read English at the University of Oxford, UK, before being awarded a Wolfson Postgraduate Scholarship in the Humanities at the University of Southampton, UK. She has recently completed her doctoral thesis “Charlotte Brontë, ‘Plainness’ and the Language of Dress” and works as costume consultant and historical advisor for the Brontë Parsonage Museum, UK, and the BBC.

Bibliographic information