The Cambridge History of English Literature, 1660-1780 offers readers discussions of the entire range of literary expression from the Restoration to the end of the eighteenth century. The volume's guiding purpose is to examine the social and historical circumstances within which literary production and imaginative writing take place in the period and to evaluate the enduring verbal complexity and cultural insights they articulate so powerfully.
This volume covers the history of printing and publishing from the lapse of government licensing of printed works in 1695 to the development of publishing as a specialist commercial undertaking and the industrialization of book production around 1830. During this period, literacy rose and the world of print became an integral part of everyday life, a phenomenon that had profound effects on politics and commerce, on literature and cultural identity, on education and the dissemination of practical knowledge. Written by a distinguished international team of experts, this study examines print culture from all angles: readers and authors, publishers and booksellers; books, newspapers and periodicals; social places and networks for reading; new genres (children's books, the novel); the growth of specialist markets; and British book exports, especially to the colonies. Interdisciplinary in its perspective, this book will be an important scholarly resource for many years to come.