Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Judith Slagle

Committee Members

Thomas Crofts, Joshua Reid


The Long Eighteenth Century was a period in which change was constant and proceeding the Restoration Era; this sense of change continued throughout the era. Charles II created an era in which women were allowed on the theatre stage, and his mistresses accompanied him to court; Charles II set the stage for the proto-feminist ideas of the eighteenth century that would manifest themselves in Eliza Haywood’s Love in Excess, Daniel Defoe’s Roxana, and Elizabeth Inchbald’s A Simple Story. These novels showcase the enlightenment of women and some of their male contemporaries and the beginning struggles of female agency. The eighteenth century was a time in which the separate sphere mentality grew ever stronger within the patriarchal society, and yet, women began to question their subservient place in this society—although this struggle would continue to intensify throughout the nineteenth century and eventually come to fruition in the late nineteenth century.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.