English Showalter

English Showalter is co-editor of the multi-volume correspondence of Françoise de Graffigny, and the author of her biography, published last year.

Every single one matters: The first black female novelist?

Elaine Showalter and English Showalter, 18 August 2005

On 11 November 2001, the New York Times announced a major literary discovery. Henry Louis Gates, chairman of the African-American Studies Department at Harvard, had bought at auction the unpublished manuscript of the ‘earliest known novel by a female African-American slave and probably the earliest known novel by a black woman anywhere’. According to the article, the novel, signed...


Job Not Wanted

7 March 1996

Elaine Showalter does not respond to gratuitously malicious letters, but as her husband I do not feel bound by such constraints. Since Elizabeth Spencer (Letters, 18 April) has chosen to publish her unfounded and scurrilous opinion that the only reason for praising Marge Garber and Skip Gates is to get a job at Harvard, I would feel remiss if I did not publish some relevant facts. First, Elaine has...
As pleased as I was to see Françoise de Graffigny and her Letters from a Peruvian Woman receive over a full page of lively discussion by P.N. Furbank (LRB, 24 March), I am sorry that he relied so heavily on Georges Noël’s worthy but outdated biography for much of his information on the author’s life. The 30 ‘wonderfully good’ letters she wrote from Cirey about Voltaire comprise only a fraction...

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