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‘Born a Hundred Years Too Soon’: Bodichon’s Agentic Epistolary Bildung

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Abstract

In the conclusion I appraise Bodichon’s epistolary Bildung. I assess her feminist outlook—as it emerges at the intersection of her publications, letters and paintings—and the methodology I develop in this book. In this chapter I first unpack the nature of Bodichon’s gendered gebildet self with a view to locating Bodichon’s epistolary feminist becoming within the mid-Victorian women’s movement, its ideas and campaigns. I conclude the book by addressing the ontological tension that underpins my epistolary study of Bodichon’s Bildung between two antagonists understandings of the self in order to claim that the epistolary (and visual) sources I have analysed in this book act as partial, perspectival and mediated, yet complementarily insightful, sources of knowledge about Bodichon’s feminist unfolding. For they provide not a conclusive and unified whole—as Bildung would have it—but a kaleidoscopic self.

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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of RoehamptonLondonUK

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