Cover image for Hawthorne's Fuller mystery
Hawthorne's Fuller mystery
Mitchell, Thomas R., 1950-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Amherst : University of Massachusetts Press, [1998]

Physical Description:
ix, 318 pages ; 25 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS1892.F45 M57 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Explores the relationship between the two 19th-century American writers Nathaniel Hawthorne and Margaret Fuller. The text aims to show how Fuller's radical ideas about women's rights, equality of the sexes, and the nature of marriage influenced Hawthorne's writing.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Margaret Fuller was a leading literary and arts critic, the US's greatest contemporary Goethe scholar, the first editor of The Dial, and a pioneer feminist. She wrote that she "was not born to the common womanly lot," a claim that Emerson and other contemporaries agreed with--often through clenched teeth, it seems. Hawthorne in particular both admired and mistrusted her, and Mitchell (Texas A & M Univ.) writes convincingly that Hawthorne used such major works as "Rappaccini's Daughter," The Scarlet Letter, The Blithedale Romance, and The Marble Faun to work out his intellectual stance toward Fuller's ideas and his personal feelings toward her. For example, Mitchell argues that Hawthorne not only describes Hester Prynne in terms of praise and condemnation identical to those used by Fuller to depict George Sand but also thought of the unconventional Fuller as one destined to be censured herself by a still-Puritanical public. Mitchell's study is informed by current Hawthorne scholarship, yet it is refreshingly jargon free. The author takes a risk by viewing all of Hawthorne through a Fuller-colored lense, but his gamble pays off in persuasive new readings. Graduate students, researchers, faculty. D. Kirby; Florida State University