The Subject Examined: Penny Bloods, the Anatomy Act, and a Common Ground for Analysis

  • Anna Gasperini
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Literature, Science and Medicine book series (PLSM)


This introductory chapter explains the historical context of the mass publication market and the Anatomy Act and puts these two elements into relationship. The Anatomy Act itself is the subject of a brief textual analysis explaining how it behaved as a literary object; this section clarifies why it is a controversial text and provides tools to navigate the exegesis in subsequent chapters. Finally, the chapter explains the book’s angle, connecting it to previous research on penny bloods, the Anatomy Act, and medical science in popular fiction, and offering a rationale for the selection of the four specimens examined from the penny bloods vast corpus.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anna Gasperini
    • 1
  1. 1.Independent ScholarPerugiaItaly

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