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date: 22 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the works of antebellum writers about city and urban space. It investigates how American writers accessed social and political phenomena which elude visual perception, and suggests that Lydia Maria Child, George Lippard, Fanny Fern, and other authors who toured, investigated, and ambled around city spaces confronted this challenge posed by urbanization. The article contends that in pioneering new structures of literary attention, a number of antebellum urban writers showed their readers vast areas of life which had hitherto been invisible.

Keywords: antebellum writers, city, urban space, visual perception, Lydia Maria Child, George Lippard, Fanny Fern, urbanization, literary attention

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