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Marcy J. Dinius
DePaul University (Chicago, IL 60604-2287)
African American Abolitionist David Walker's "Appeal" (1829) and Antebellum American Print Culture

Anxiety and Influence is the first study of the far-reaching effects of David Walker's Appeal on antebellum American print culture. By "print culture," I mean the roles, materials, and practices related to print—-authors, printers, book distributors, and booksellers; paper, type, and presses; distribution and circulation; readers and reading practices; reprinting, and plagiarism, among others. The project's title signals one of the project's rehabilitative aims. The study of influence fell out of fashion in literary studies as the canon was expanding to include a more representative range of authors. This book extends the questions that influence allows us to ask about generative authorship and intertextuality beyond belles lettres to different kinds of writing and media--political writing in pamphlets and newspapers, legal writing in government documents, printed lectures, biographical sketches--and to examples of negative influence and the suppression and destruction of texts.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
American Literature; American Studies

Fellowships for College Teachers and Independent Scholars

Research Programs

$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/2015 – 8/31/2016