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Autobiography

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Biography, Autobiography, Memoir

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Biography | Autobiography | Memoir explained with examples

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The Autobiography of BENJAMIN FRANKLIN | Animated Book Summary

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Literature and memory LIFE WRITING, AUTOBIOGRAPHY & THE PERSONAL ESSAY 1 Dr Hedley Twidle, UCT

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What is Biography & Autobiography?| Definition, Meaning, Features & Comparison

An autobiography is a self-written account of the life of oneself. The word "autobiography" was first used deprecatingly by William Taylor in 1797 in the English periodical The Monthly Review, when he suggested the word as a hybrid, but condemned it as "pedantic". However, its next recorded use was in its present sense, by Robert Southey in 1809. Despite only being named early in the nineteenth century, first-person autobiographical writing originates in antiquity. Roy Pascal differentiates autobiography from the periodic self-reflective mode of journal or diary writing by noting that "[autobiography] is a review of a life from a particular moment in time, while the diary, however reflective it may be, moves through a series of moments in time". Autobiography thus takes stock of the autobiographer's life from the moment of composition. While biographers generally rely on a wide variety of documents and viewpoints, autobiography may be based entirely on the writer's memory. The memoir form is closely associated with autobiography but it tends, as Pascal claims, to focus less on the self and more on others during the autobiographer's review of his or her life.
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  • Spiritual autobiography 

  • Memoirs 

  • Fictional autobiography 

  • The classical period: Apologia, oration, confession 

  • Early autobiographies 

  • 18th and 19th centuries 

  • 20th and 21st centuries