Sympathy and the State in the Romantic Era: Systems, State Finance, and the Shadows of Futurity

By Domke, Rebecca | The Byron Journal, June 2009 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Sympathy and the State in the Romantic Era: Systems, State Finance, and the Shadows of Futurity


Domke, Rebecca, The Byron Journal


SYMPATHY AND THE STATE IN THE ROMANTIC ERA: SYSTEMS, STATE FINANCE, AND THE SHADOWS OF FUTURITY. By Robert Mitchell. New York and London: Routledge, 2007. Pp. x + 266. ISBN 0 415 77142 0. £75.00.

Robert Mitchell's complex study combines the seemingly unrelated topics of state finance and financial crises with concepts of sympathy and their influence on the literature of the 'Romantic era'. In an introductory chapter he outlines Great Britain's financial difficulties during the period, addressing topics such as the national debt, the Bank Restriction Act and the debate about the increasing reliance on paper currency. He also explicates concepts central to his study such as 'social systems', 'financial capitalism' and 'affect'. Five chronologically ordered chapters follow. These discuss ideas of 'sympathy' and 'identification' as they are represented in literary texts by various authors. Chapter 1 focuses on the South Sea stock panic of 1720-21 and the impact it had on the theories of sympathy developed in Scottish moral philosophy, especially in David Hume's Treatise of Human Nature. The second chapter focuses on the writings of the sentimental moral philosophers Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Adam Smith, contrasting the very different ideas of identification and sympathy that inform their responses to the importance of the national debt. Chapter 3, through a discussion of works by Ann Yearsley, Hannah More and Samuel Jackson Pratt, explores how anti-slavery poets invoked sympathetic responses from their readers and Chapter 4 discusses the mark left on Wordsworth's poems of 1797-98 by his own experience of debt and financial struggle and the crisis of public credit that occurred at the same time.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Sympathy and the State in the Romantic Era: Systems, State Finance, and the Shadows of Futurity
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?