By Colin Gibson
This choice of essays by means of tested critics and students makes an attempt to provide explorations of unpolluted elements, private and non-private of the artwork of the key Victorian novelists, in lots of instances supported by means of prolonged shut readings in their novels. There are 4 reviews of novels by means of Dickens, and reviews of novels by way of Charlotte Bronte, George Eliot, Thomas Hardy, Henry James, Trollope and Kipling also are supplied. Colin Gibson is writer of "The Interpretative energy" and he has written articles and essays on Renaissance drama and poetry and glossy poetry and hymnology.
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Extra info for Art and Society in the Victorian Novel: Essays on Dickens and his Contemporaries
He is not one of Mrs Pardiggle's Tockahoopo Indians; he is not one of Mrs Jellyby's lambs, being wholly 22 Art and Society in the Victorian Novel unconnected with Borrioboola-Gha; he is not softened by distance and unfamiliarity; he is not a genuine foreign-grown savage; he is the ordinary home-made article. Dirty, ugly, disagreeable to all the senses, in body a common creature of the common streets, only in soul a heathen. The paragraph ends with the Carlylian outburst: Stand forth, Jo, in uncompromising colors!
Bounderby stands wholly apart over the type-act of the book. He never even begins to find his position unbearable and so is never ready to give it up and to quit. So far from that, his last act (I referred to it early on, and said that it would have to come up again) is more than one further superb representation of his egotism, though Dickens doubtless saw it as that. His last act is to pullulate his personal Selfhood twenty-five times over and in perpetuity. Bounderby the individual, by his own will, becomes a Bounderby-society.
Leavis added a note in this book to his chapter on Hard Times, contradicting an earlier discussion of it by myself in Dickens and the Twentieth Century, ed. J. Gross and G. Pearson (London, 1962). In 1. 1970, it seemed to me that what he said did not need a reply from me; on re-reading him now, I find myself thinking along the same lines. It should be noted, though, that the present essay is a substantial extension of what I argued in detail about Hard Times in 1962, and so, it may justly be said, is a substantial modification of that.
Art and Society in the Victorian Novel: Essays on Dickens and his Contemporaries by Colin Gibson