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Celebrity: On the Different Publics of World Authorship

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNChapter (peer-reviewed)

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Abstract

This chapter shows how the methods and approaches of Celebrity Studies throw fresh light on what authors and literature can do in the world. In particular, the divide between elite and popular fiction turns out to be illusory once we start paying attention to the way authors and their works actually move around. Combining celebrity theory with a practical analysis of the networks sustaining literature allows us to examine afresh the ways and degrees to which authors accrue ‘attention capital’ and from which social groupings, and why. Working through examples taken from the early modern period to the present day, this chapter provides a model approach not only for seeing beyond the individual author to witness the complex networks of agents involved in the process of authorship—from editors to translators, agents, and readers, and so on—but also for placing the question of agency once again at the heart of that process.