Between January 1880 and December 1889, Harper’s Monthly Magazine published 263 works of fiction, including 19 serialized novels. Of the total, more than half, 132 novels and stories, are known to be by women or appear under a woman’s name.1 Four of the writers — George Eliot, Thomas Hardy, William Dean Howells and Henry James — have remained dominant figures in American and English literary history. Several others, including Sarah Orne Jewett, Thomas Nelson Page and Mary E. Wilkins, retained their status as regionalists. The majority, male and female, quickly passed into oblivion and have remained forgotten, their books long since out of print.


Woman Writer Realist Fiction Dominant Figure North American Literature American Fiction 
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  1. 2.
    James Fullarton Muirhead, America, the Land of Contrasts: A Briton’s View of His American Kin (London: John Lane, 1898), p. 186.Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    Henry James: The Future of the Novel, edited and with an introduction by Leon Edel (New York: Vintage Books, 1956), pp. 6, 14.Google Scholar

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© Elsa Nettels 1997

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