The Victorian world in a rear-view mirrorShow full item record
|The Victorian world in a rear-view mirror
|Doctor of Philosophy
|Deploying an eclectic combination of cultural materialism, poststructuralism, postcolonialism, and Bakhtinian dialogism, this dissertation examines how Victorian England represented itself and others at the conjunction of imperialism and nationalism. Scholarly studies of Victorian England have tended to highlight the empire's impact on the rest of the world. This dissertation draws attention to Victorian England's interaction with, rather than its dominance over, the rest of the world. Chapter One correlates imperial cartography with Victorian literature, detecting the contending messages of anguish and wishing that these two modes of representation simultaneously conveyed. It examines popular authors such as R. M. Ballantyne, H. Rider Haggard, Arthur Conan Doyle, and Emily Bront¿. Chapter Two studies Frances Trollope's and Anna Leonowens's travel narratives within the context of market reality, exploring how gender, class and race issues complicated or even problematized the genre of travel literature. Chapter Three investigates the inter-translation of racial and social hierarchies that engendered the textual similitude of Kipling's account of colonial Calcutta and London narratives by James Thomson, Henry Mayhew, Charles Booth, and William Booth. Chapter Four unfolds the ideological underpinnings and representative mechanisms that Victorian literature and public museums shared in responding to the shift of social power in the second half of nineteenth century. Authors under study include Thomas Carlyle, Matthew Arnold, George Eliot, William Thackeray, and Benjamin Disraeli. Chapter Five questions the adequacy of received definitions of the Victorian period, anticipating that future reformation of the Victorian canon will result in the re-demarcation of the epoch. It studies postcolonial writers such as V. S. Naipaul, and Kazuo Ishiguro to prove the anachronism of periodization. Collectively, these five chapters present multiple reflections of Victorian England. It is simultaneously an adventurer and xenophobe, a disseminator and receiver of culture, a subject and object of colonial mimesis, an expanding empire and emerging nation, a bygone empire in history and a vibrant topic of postcoloniality.
|Hughes, Linda K.
This item appears in the following Collection(s)
- Doctoral Dissertations