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Susan Edmonstone Ferrier (1782–1854) was a Scottish writer of the Romantic era. She published three novels – Marriage (1818), The Inheritance (1824), and Destiny (1831) – that were well received by readers and critics and that remained popular through the mid-nineteenth century (Copeland, 1893). Since then, though, her novels have fallen out of print, and she and her work have been largely forgotten.
Recovering Ferrier’s works, which address issues of Scottish nationhood, national history, and cultural identity around the time of the Highland Clearances and the Acts of Union, is especially pressing today, in the context of the ongoing Scottish Independence movement and the popular interest in Scottish history and culture sparked by the Starz TV series Outlander (2014– ), which foregrounds the Jacobite Rising of 1746 and its political and cultural aftershocks.
Sir Walter Scott was a family friend and an admirer of her work, and Ferrier’s correspondence includes the literary, cultural, and political elite of Romantic-era Edinburgh. Her body of work is thus an important record of Scottish life and culture in the early nineteenth-century.
The aim of this digital library is to curate a comprehensive collection of Ferrier’s publications as well as relevant biographical materials and critical resources as a way of recuperating her work and making it accessible to literary scholars, students, and readers. For more details about this digital library, including a rationale for its scope and structure, visit About the Project.
Image source: The National Galleries of Scotland, https://www.nationalgalleries.org/art-and-artists/2424/susan-edmonstone-ferrier-1782-1854-novelist-called-susan-ferrier
Copeland, Charles Townsend. 1893. Miss Austen and Miss Ferrier: Contrast and comparison. The Atlantic Monthly: A Magazine of Literature, Science, Art, and Politics, 71, 836–46. https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1893/06/miss-austen-and-miss-ferrier/529989/
Susan Ferrier: A Digital Library © 2021 by Caroline Winter is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0