Evolution and Victorian Culture

Author: Bernard V. Lightman
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107028426
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Examines the dynamic interplay between evolution and Victorian culture, mapping new relationships between the arts and sciences.

Byron and the Victorians

Author: Andrew Elfenbein
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521454520
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Literary-historical account of Byron's influence on Victorian writers, concentrating on class and sexuality.

Darwin Literature and Victorian Respectability

Author: Gowan Dawson
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521872499
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The success of Charles Darwin's evolutionary theories in mid-nineteenth-century Britain has long been attributed, in part, to his own adherence to strict standards of Victorian respectability, especially in regard to sex. Gowan Dawson contends that the fashioning of such respectability was by no means straightforward or unproblematic, with Darwin and his principal supporters facing surprisingly numerous and enduring accusations of encouraging sexual impropriety. Integrating contextual approaches to the history of science with work in literary studies, Dawson sheds light on the well-known debates over evolution by examining them in relation to the murky underworlds of Victorian pornography, sexual innuendo, unrespectable freethought and artistic sensualism. Such disreputable and generally overlooked aspects of nineteenth-century culture were actually remarkably central to many of these controversies. Focusing particularly on aesthetic literature and legal definitions of obscenity, Dawson reveals the underlying tensions between Darwin's theories and conventional notions of Victorian respectability.

Evolution and Victorian Musical Culture

Author: Bennett Zon
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107020441
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Explores the musical background to Darwinism and the development of the relationship between science and the arts in Victorian Britain.

The Poetry of Victorian Scientists

Author: Daniel Brown
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107023378
Format: PDF, Kindle
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The first study of poetry by Victorian scientists, a unique record of the nature and cultures of Victorian science.

Fairies in Nineteenth Century Art and Literature

Author: Nicola Bown
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521793155
Format: PDF, ePub
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Although fairies are now banished to the realm of childhood, these diminutive figures were central to the work of many Victorian painters, novelists, poets and even scientists. It would be no exaggeration to say that the Victorians were obsessed with fairies: yet this obsession has hitherto received little scholarly attention. Nicola Bown reminds us of the importance of fairies in Victorian culture. In the figure of the fairy, the Victorians crystallized contemporary anxieties about the effects of industrialization, the remoteness of the past, the value of culture and the way in which science threatened to undermine religion and spirituality. Above all, the fairy symbolized disenchantment with the irresistible forces of progress and modernity. As these forces stripped the world of its wonder, the Victorians consoled themselves by dreaming of a place and a people suffused with the enchantment that was disappearing from their own lives.

The Victorian Parlour

Author: Thad Logan
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521631822
Format: PDF, Kindle
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The parlour was the centre of the Victorian home and, as Thad Logan shows, the place where contemporary conflicts about domesticity and gender relations were frequently played out. In The Victorian Parlour: A Cultural Study, Logan uses an interdisciplinary approach that combines the perspectives of art history, social history and literary theory to describe and analyse the parlour as a cultural artefact. She offers a detailed investigation of specific objects in the parlour, and argues that these things articulated social meaning and could present symbolic resolutions to disturbances in the social field. The book concludes with a discussion of how representations of the parlour in literature and art reveal the pleasures and anxieties associated with Victorian domestic life.

Satire in an Age of Realism

Author: Aaron Matz
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139488317
Format: PDF, Mobi
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As nineteenth-century realism became more and more intrepid in its pursuit of describing and depicting everyday life, it blurred irrevocably into the caustic and severe mode of literature better named satire. Realism's task of portraying the human became indistinguishable from satire's directive to castigate the human. Introducing an entirely new way of thinking about realism and the Victorian novel, Aaron Matz refers to the fusion of realism and satire as 'satirical realism': it is a mode in which our shared folly and error are so entrenched in everyday life, and so unchanging, that they need no embellishment when rendered in fiction. Focusing on the novels of Eliot, Hardy, Gissing, and Conrad, and the theater of Ibsen, Matz argues that it was the transformation of Victorian realism into satire that granted it immense moral authority, but that led ultimately to its demise.

Popular Fiction and Brain Science in the Late Nineteenth Century

Author: Anne Stiles
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139504908
Format: PDF, Mobi
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In the 1860s and 1870s, leading neurologists used animal experimentation to establish that discrete sections of the brain regulate specific mental and physical functions. These discoveries had immediate medical benefits: David Ferrier's detailed cortical maps, for example, saved lives by helping surgeons locate brain tumors and haemorrhages without first opening up the skull. These experiments both incited controversy and stimulated creative thought, because they challenged the possibility of an extra-corporeal soul. This book examines the cultural impact of neurological experiments on late-Victorian Gothic romances by Robert Louis Stevenson, Bram Stoker, H. G. Wells and others. Novels like Dracula and Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde expressed the deep-seated fears and visionary possibilities suggested by cerebral localization research, and offered a corrective to the linearity and objectivity of late Victorian neurology.

The Victorian Supernatural

Author: Nicola Bown
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521810159
Format: PDF, Docs
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Essays by literary scholars, art historians and science historians explore the diversity of the Victorians' fascination with the supernatural.