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date: 18 January 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The culturally esteemed concept of the ‘Author’ is the product of the Anglophone world and emerged simultaneously with copyright and Romanticism from the early eighteenth century. Digital technologies present fundamental challenges to traditional conceptions and practices of authorship: digital texts are typically open to ‘readerly’ manipulation, and digital publishing has allowed more democratic forms of authorship such as self-publishing and crowd-funded publishing. Paradoxically, the digital domain has triggered a further elevation of the celebrity author figure, with author-maintained social media accounts providing readers with daily, or even real-time, communion with favourite authors. Authorship thus stands at a fascinating point: at once sacralized more than ever and yet, in theory at least, never more accessible to a mass public.

Keywords: Author, copyright, Romanticism, digital, self-publishing, fan fiction, incomes, celebrity, social media, festivals

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