Antecedents and Development of the Contemporary Romance Novel in English: A Study of the Contribution to the Genre by Rosamunde Pilcher and Lisa Kleypas

Universidade de Santiago de Compostela
Publication year

Inspired by the premises and the methodologies of cultural studies and feminist literary criticism, this dissertation undertakes a diachronic analysis of the romance novel genre, with the aim of illustrating that enjoying (mass‐market) romantic narratives does not impede a sincere engagement with the feminist agenda of gender equality. To accomplish this objective, this investigation looks at the close relationship of the romance novel with feminist theory and activism, and exposes the (academic) bias that denies romance novels aesthetic value or politically progressive content. In addition, the present work studies a handful of selected works by two well‐known romance writers of our time, the British Rosamunde Pilcher and the American Lisa Kleypas, in order to asssess their respective contributions to the formal and thematic development of the genre.