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Girl of the Period

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Victorian novelist and journalist Eliza Lynn Linton (1822–1898) is most often associated with her controversial 1868 essay “The Girl of the Period.” Despite Linton’s status as a professional woman writer who moved well beyond traditional female roles, the essay’s scathing treatment of the “modern girl” earned Linton a reputation as an opponent to the emerging women’s movement. The piece is perhaps best understood, however, as reflecting the rhetorical challenges of the Victorian woman writer at a crucial turning point in the history of gender and sexuality.


Published anonymously in a March 1868 issue of the Saturday Review, “The Girl of the Period” was arguably one of the most controversial pieces ever produced by Eliza Lynn Linton (1822–1898). The essay was so popular that it sold more than 40,000 copies when it was reprinted later that year as a pamphlet, sparking a wide range of responses among readers and critics alike. At the heart of Linton’s essay was...


  • Periodical
  • Fashion
  • Women’s history
  • Saturday Review
  • New Woman

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Correspondence to Kimberly J. Stern .

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Stern, K.J. (2020). Girl of the Period . In: The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Victorian Women's Writing. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

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  • Publisher Name: Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-030-02721-6

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