Alexander, Christine (2018). “In Search of the Authorial Self: Branwell Brontë’s Microcosmic World.” Journal of Juvenilia Studies https://doi.org/10.29173/jjs126
Branwell Brontë’s childhood was characterized byimaginative excess and misdirected creativity. His early experiments with miniature magazines and minuscule script suggest the limited world of the child, yet the paracosmic world he and his sisters created is one of vast proportion, with grandiose ideas that both empower and hinder the development of the young writer. This article finds an explanation for Branwell’s eccentric behaviour and increasing inability to distinguish himself from his creation, Northangerland, in a consideration of the paracosm and, in particular, of the developmental problems associated with the idea of “being in a world of one’s own” (Cohen and MacKeith 1). Evidence suggests that Branwell found it hard to cope with ordinary life and the expectations placed upon him as an only boy. Nevertheless, his early magazines, poetry and histories also suggest a playful, agile young mind keen to engage with the world despite his youth.
Friar, Nicola (2019). “A New Approach to Autobiography and Juvenilia.” Journal of Juvenilia Studies https://doi.org/10.29173/jjs21
This paper demonstrates how the two ostensibly contradictory concepts of power assumption and autobiography can co-exist simultaneously in paracosmic juvenilia, that of Charlotte Brontë in particular. Many critics assert that marginalized or isolated children use their writings as vehicles with which to assume the kind of power denied to them as minors in reality, whereas others view juvenilia as autobiographical platforms through which children can articulate their experience of the world. However, these theories are not exclusive to juvenilia, nor is the concept of a paracosm, a term which originated in the study of childhood play. Drawing on the work of such critics as Stephen MacKeith, David Cohen, and Christine Alexander, this paper examines Brontë’s Glass Town and Angrian narratives in order to demonstrate that her paracosmic world both distorts and mirrors aspects of herself and to argue accordingly that Brontë’s juvenilia is neither strictly autobiographical nor a vehicle to assume the power denied to her in reality.