Literature of the mid-19th century
---the highlight of the critical realistic novels
eview on the Antecedence Medieval Period: tales, legend, epics The Renaissance: poetry & drama; Spenser, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, Bacon The 17th century: Revolution & Restoration Metaphysical Poets, Cavalier Poets, John Milton, John Bunyan, John Dryden. The 18th century: Defoe, Swift, Fielding; Neo-Classicism: Pope; Sentimentalism: Gray; Pre-Romanticism: William Blake, Robert Burns. The Early 19th century: the Romantic Period; Wordsworth, Coleridge;
Chartist literature Critical Realistic novels Victorian poetry Victorian prose
Review of the House of England The House of Tutor (都铎王朝,14851603；十六世纪) ? The House of Stuart (斯图亚特王朝, 1603-1649, <Cromwell 1653-1659> 1660 restoration-1714；十七世纪) ? The house of Hanover (汉诺威王朝 1714-1901；十八世纪)
House of Hanover 1714---1910
? George I
? George II
? George III
? George IV
? Edward VII
? William IV
longest reigning monarch in UK history
1.Political and economical background
? The early years:
rapid economic development;
serious social problems.
? After the Parliament Reform during1832-33:
the political power: decaying aristocrats
? Towards the mid-century: England its highest point of development as a world power.
great prosperity & richness
poverty, worsening living & working conditions, mass unemployment Chartist Movement (1836-1848).
? 2. Ideological:
＊ rapid development of science & technology,
new inventions & discoveries in geology, astronomy, biology & anthropology completely shook people's religious convictions.
＊ Utilitarianism: everything test by the criterion
of utility--- self interest--- middle-class industrialists exploiting workers to the utmost--suffering and poverty
? Darwinism: Darwin's “The Origin of Species” & “The Descent of Man” shook the basis of the traditional faith. ? Marxism: Political essays: Marx’s ―Capital‖, Engels’s ―The Conditions of the Working Class in England‖
3. Chartist Movement (1836---1848) Upsurges:
The Grand Consolidated Trades Union
London Working Men’sAssociation
People's Charter(6 points)--- basic rights, better living and working conditions the first petition, rejected.
? 6 Points in People‖s Charter: Universal Suffrage 普选权 Vote by Ballot 无记名秘密投票 Annually Elected Parliament
Abolition of the Property Qualification
Equal electoral Districts平均分配选举区 Payment for Members of Parliament支
2) 1842: The National Chartist Association the second petition, rejected 3) 1846:
the third petition, rejected.
abolition of “The Corn Law” and passage of “The Ten Hours Act” in 1847
? Significance: 1) first mass movement of the English working class 2) early sign of the awakening of the poor, oppressed people.
? Literature of 30’s and 40’s: Chartist Literature --- Ernest Jones, W. James Linton,
? Novels (Critical Realism) Charles Dickens William Makepeace Thackeray Thomas Hardy Bronte sisters Mrs. Gaskell George Eliot
Poetry & Prose of the mid-19th C
? A. Tennyson ? The Brownings ? The Rossettis ? Swinburne ? M. Arnold ? Thomas Carlyle ? M. Arnold ? John Ruskin ? Thomas Huxley ? Macaulay
W. James Linton
? Periods of Chartist literature:
1) early period: Poetry, fiery speeches, excellent literary criticism 2) period of maturity:
theme: demonstrations, petitions → armed rising and internationalism new literary genres: prose fiction, long poems, critical essays, etc. 3) Period of decline(1848-1858): Linton’s poem ―The Dirge of Nations‖ Jones’ novel ― Woman’s Wrongs‖
1. Ernest Jones (1819-1869) – most talented ? 1845 joined the Chartist movement ? 1848, arrested, seditious speech: "green flag of Chartism will soon be flying over Downing Street". ? 1851 journal, “The People's Paper”: socialist newspaper, speeches, “The Charter No Surrender”, influence of Marx & Engels
died in 1869, 100,000, his funeral
His works ＊Short poems ? ―The Song of the Low‖ ? ―The Song of the Future‖ ? ―The March of Freedom‖ ? ―A Song for the People‖
? ―The Revolt of Hindostan‖: class struggle
＊novels: ? “The Confession of a King‖ ? ―The Romance of a People‖
? ―The History of Democratic Movement‖
? ― Woman’s Wrongs‖
2. William Linton (1812 – 1897)
? ―The Dirge of Nations‖:
＊ long poem: the proper role of the
poet in a revolutionary period
＊ influenced by ―Prometheus Unbound‖
3. Thomas Hood (democratic,1799-1845) ? ―The Song of the Shirt‖ 衬衫之歌 ＊ powerful attack on worker exploitation
＊ illusions of enlightened members to alleviate the sufferings of the poor
? ―The Bridge of Sighs‖: the tragic fate of a woman whose poverty and misery forced her to a life of degeneration as a prostitute and who finally jumped into the river to put an end to her shame
Critical Realistic Novelists
1. features of Victorian novels
★ In Victorian period, novels became the major literary trend and major form of expression of progressive thought.
1). sticking to the principle of faithful representation of the 18th-century realist novel, carried on their duty to criticism of the society and defense of the mass.
2). all concerned about the fate of common people: angry at the inhuman social institutions, the decaying social morality as represented by the moneyworship, Utilitarianism, the widespread misery, poverty and injustice.
3). truthful depiction of people's life and bitter & strong criticism of the society ---- awakening public consciousness to social problems ---- actual improvement of the society.
4). fail to point out the right solution of the social problems of the time ＊ appeal to morality and ethic
＊ advocate peaceful reformation and reconciliation to solve the class contradictions
William Makepeace Thackery
Thomas Hardy Charlotte Bronte Emily Bronte Anne Bronte Mrs. Gaskell
Charles Dickens 1812-1870
the greatest novelist of Victorian period and the greatest representative of English critical realism
? Portsmouth, started school at nine, his father imprisoned for debt when he was ten, forced to support himself by working in a shoe-polish factory. ? A resulting sense of humiliation and abandonment haunted him for life, and he later described this experience, only slightly altered, in his novel “David Copperfield”.
? self-educated, legal clerk, reporter in the courts and Parliament.
? marry Catherine Hogarth in 1836
? first novel “The Pickwick Papers”, famous, influenced the publishing industry, issued in inexpensive monthly installments, became popular among Dickens's time.
? 1842 lectured in the United States in favor of an international copyright agreement and in opposition to slavery ? young actress, Ellen Ternan, separation from his wife in 1858, a fatal stroke on June 9, 1870, and was buried in Westminster Abbey five days later.
His literary career ? A. 1836 ―Sketches by Boz‖ 1836-37 ―The Pickwick Papers‖ 1837-38 ―Oliver Twist‖ 1838-39 ―Nicholas Nickleby‖ 1840-41 ―The Old Curiosity Shop‖ 1841 ―Barnaby Rudge‖
? B. 1842 1843-45 1843 1844 1845 1846-48 1849-50
―American Notes‖ ―Martin Chuzzlewit‖ ―A Christmas Carol‖ ― The Chimes‖ ―The Cricket on the Hearth‖ ―Dombey and son‖ ―David Copperfield
Excitement and Irritation
? C. 1852—53 1854 1855—57 1859 1860---61 1864---65 1870
―Bleak House‖ ―Hard Times‖ ―Little Dorrit‖ ―A Tale of Two Cities‖ ―Great Expectations‖ ―Our Mutual Friend‖ ― Edwin Drood‖
Steady Intensifying pessimism
＊ exposure of the bitter conditions of
＊ truthful presentation of the miseries
of the poor and oppressed and the social system and the institutions responsible for such miseries
＊ best-remembered line
―Please, Sir, I want some more!‖
＊ Mr Dombey (rich bourgeoisie): proud,
hard-hearted, cold-blooded, thinks of everything in terms of money: sends his son to a school where the child is treated to be like him, cold and practical; mistreats his daughter; ill-treats his wife as his property and cannot tolerate her having affection for any one besides him, even for his daughter.
? rich bourgeoisie: bitter criticism to the capitalist society, think everything in
terms of cash
? simple people: love, friendship, self-
sacrifice and goodness
Comments ? autobiography ? attack social evils in Victorian England miseries of child-labor tyranny in schools and debtors’ prison
cruelty and immorality of upper class
? simple folk: selflessness
Hard Times 1. Introduction: ? the shortest of his novels.
? The novel is unusual, set in the fictitious Victorian industrial town: Coketown.
2. major characters
? Mr. Bounderby: a wealthy businessman, employs many of the characters. He marries Louisa Gradgrind (30 years his junior) and the marriage eventually ends unhappily. Throughout the novel, Bounderby is a symbol of hypocrisy. ? Mr. Gradgrind: the founder of the Gradgrind educational system. He firmly believes in "hard facts" and statistics (philosophy of fact).
? Mr. Gradgrind: "Now, what I want is, Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. …‖
comments: ? French Revolution
? hatred for tyranny of ruling class, old
ways of oppression must be changed
? criticize the bloodshed in revolution,
disapprove of extreme measures
best- remember lines (the opening) ? It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, ? it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, ? it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, ? it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness,
? it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, ? we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, ? we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way ? ----in short, the period was so far like the present period.
Dickens and Christmas
? ―A Christmas Carol‖
? ―The Chimes‖ ? ―The Cricket on the Hearth‖
? Many of Dickens’s novels involves Christmas. Christmas feasting, merrymaking in Dickens' earlier novels gives way to a darker Christmas in the later novels ? influence on the way that we celebrate Christmas today than any single individual in human history
? At the beginning of the Victorian period the celebration of Christmas was in decline. The Industrial Revolution, in full development in Dickens' time, allowed workers little time for the celebration of Christmas. But it was the Christmas stories of Dickens that rekindled the joy of Christmas in Britain and America.
? Dickens describes the holidays as "a good time: a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time: the only time I know of in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of other people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys".
? Dickens' name had become so synonymous with Christmas that on
hearing of his death in 1870 a little girl in London asked, "Mr. Dickens dead? Then will Father Christmas die too?"
features of his novels
1. successful characterization: Dickens was skillful in giving the characters exactly the actions and words that fit them. 2. successful use of broad humor and penetrating satire: combine masterly storytelling, humor and irony with sharp social criticism.
3. complicated and fascinating plot (more than one minor threads besides
the major one)
4. most of his novels end with a happy
Memorial of Dickens
? Broadstairs Dickens festival
Dickens often visited Broadstairs, enjoying the sun and healthful sea air. This connection with the famous author is memorized by the town every June. immortalized the town as "Our English Watering Place"
William Makepeace Thackeray 1811-1863
? in Calcutta, India ? Trinity College, Cambridge without taking a degree ? Gambling, bank failure ? quarrel with Charles Dickens ? died suddenly on Christmas Eve 1863, reconciled with Dickens
? One of Thackeray's daughters (Harriet) was the first wife of Sir Leslie Stephen. With his second wife, Stephen was the father of Virginia Woolf, making Thackeray "almost" her grandfather.
? ―Vanity Fair‖: masterpiece
on social criticism
? ―The Book of Snobs‖
? ―Pendenis‖ ? ―The Newcomes‖ historical Novels ? ―Henry Esmond‖ ? ―The Virginians‖
―Vanity Fair, or A Novel Without a Hero"
? Title: ―The Pilgrim's Progress‖
? Setting: Napoleonic wars
2. major characters Amelia Becky Sharp Dobbin George Osborne Joseph Crawley
＊ sub-title (A Novel without a Hero):
? the novel is concerned not with individual heroes but with the society as a whole ? the characters are all flawed to a greater or lesser degree; even the most sympathetic have weaknesses
＊Becky Sharp: tricky, resourceful, practical and capable.
? Born with no advantages, in a society that values rank and wealth, Becky makes her way to the highest levels of society through her own beauty, intelligence, hard work, and talent.
＊ limitation: no suggestion that social or political changes could improve the nature of society.
Thomas Hardy 1840-1928
? ? ? ? ?
? ? ?
village of Puddletown Heath Son of an architect, started architectural career 22 to London, turned to literature, rural life, 1868, first novel rejected, first published novel: Desperate Remedies(1871) Tess (1891)and Jude(1896) --- public criticism, never wrote fiction again. A bishop solemnly burnt the book, "probably in his despair at not being able to burn me“ Turned to poetry after 1898 --- Wessex poems Order of Merit, gold medal of the Royal Society of Literature. died in 1928, Poet's Corner
His novels—3 groups A. Romances and Fantasies A Pair of Blue Eyes The Trumpet Major
Two on a Tower
A Group of Noble Dames The Well Beloved
B. novels of ingenuity Desperate Remedies The Hand of Ethelberta
A Changed Man, The Waiting Supper and Other Tales
C. Novels of Character and Environment (Wessex novels) Under the Greenwood Tree
Far from the Madding Crowd The Return of the Native The Mayor of Casterbridge Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Jude the Obscure
? Thomas Hardy first used the term "Wessex" in his 1874 novel, “Far From the Madding Crowd”. The extinct kingdom to which Hardy refers is the ancient kingdom of the West Saxons known as Wessex (6th—10th). ( King Alfred the Great )
The Return of the Native 1. major characters Clym Yeobright Eustacia Vye
Egdon Heath (setting): embodiment of the powerful and eternal force of nature
＊ Clym Yeobright: tired of city life, settle
down in countryside
＊ Eustacia: eager to go to outer world
Hardy’s disgust of modern cities and yearning for rural life
3. analysis of this novel (1). first mature novel (2). pessimistic philosophy: contrast: strong power of nature insignificance of man (3). the helplessness and ridiculousness of human before the mysterious force of nature
The Mayor of Casterbridge 1. contents: rise and decline of Henchard: simple man to a mayor to death, not being conquered by the vicious social environment till death 2. criticism: a pure and simple and essentially good man is doomed to a terrible fate
Tess of the D’Urbervilles, A Pure Woman
1. finest and most famous novel
Tess Durbeyfield Angel Clare
2. Comments on the novel 1). men’s abuse of women & aristocrats’ abuse of peasants and double moral
standard of man and woman
2). importance of chance and fate
3). based on oppositions: male-female, active-passive, aristocracy-peasants, present-past,
Jude the Obscure
1. most pessimistic novel 2. major characters Jude Fawley Arabella Donn
3. analysis of the novel 1). attacked British institutions: higher education, social class, and marriage 2). social forces--- mysterious hand of nature beyond human intelligence and control
1). pessimistic spirit and philosophy (Fatalism): mankind is subjected to the rule of some hostile and mysterious fate, which brings misfortune to human life.
2). disgust for the bourgeois civilization and return to the past society; sympathy with the simple laboring people against the rich and the wicked 3). strong elements of naturalism and symbolism: influence of nature on life; man’s struggle against mysterious force in nature
the Bronte sisters
Charlotte (1816 – 1855) Emily (1818 – 1848) Anne (1820 –1849 )
All 3 Bronte Sisters…
? male pen name ? Charlotte: Currer Bell ? Emily: Ellis Bell ? Anne: Acton Bell
―Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell‖ Charlotte ―The Professor‖ ―Jane Eyre‖ ―Shirley‖ ―Villette‖ Emily ―Wuthering Heights‖ Anne ―Agnes Grey‖ ―The Tenant of the Wildfell Hall‖
? The Clergy Daughter’s School,
Maria & Elizabeth, tuberculosis, model for Lowood,
the girls’ school in Jane Eyre.
? During the early 19th century, fashionable to educate females. ? free education not available ? the very rich, elegant girls’ schools
1. Less costly
schools were formed by wellmeaning benefactors in order to educate poor females. 2. With stress on female education, governesses were in demand. 3. Illness was common because the poor conditions of the schools 4. Pay was poor, but it was one of the only jobs available to educated, yet impoverished young women
analysis of the novel 1. completely new woman image: ? a fiery spirit & a longing to love & be loved; ? a poor, plain little governess who dares to love her master, a man superior to her in many ways ? brave enough to declare to the man her love for him
2. sharp criticism of the existing society ? religious hypocrisy of charitable institutions (inhuman misery in charity school) ? the social discrimination and the false social convention as concerning love and
? education is the key to all social problems ? remove evils of capitalism by the improvement of the schools
4. significance ? a work of feminist consciousness: speak not only for all middle-class women but for women of all classes
? Tolstoy: Anna Karenina
? Ibsen: Nora Helmer (A Doll's House)
Jane Eyre’s Gothic Influence
–Mysterious imprisoned woman –A heroine who faces danger –Supernatural interventions at crucial moments in the plot
? Mr. Rochester is an example of this type ? characteristics are… –Proud –Gloomy –Mysterious –Passionate
? “Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain, and little, I am soulless and heartless? …… And if God had gifted me with some beauty and much wealth, I should have made it as hard for you to leave me, as it is now for me to leave you…… it is my spirit that addresses your spirit; just as if both had passed through the grave, and we stood at God's feet, equal,--as we are!"
? Nelly Dean (Ellen Dean): chief narrator ? Lockwood: an intermediary (媒介) between Nelly and the reader
? Wuthering Heights 呼啸山庄 ? Thrushcross Grange 画眉山庄
analysis of the novel
1. the theme of the novel
＊ romantic tale of intense, tragic love and revenge ＊tragedy of social inequality: the oppressor and the oppressed
＊some deeper level:
harmony of the universe destruction
1) The story opens with the contrasting and yet well-balanced parallelism of the Earnshaw and Linton families. ※ Wuthering Heights: high on the barren moorland, naked to natural elements, where The Earnshaws live with their two active, wild, untamed children of storm valley below, ideal home of Linton family with their two calm, gentle, passive children
※ Thrushcross Grange: sheltered in the
2) But the harmony is destroyed by the arrival of an Heathcliff, a source of discord by turning the wife against the husband and the children against the father. Later he succeeds in replacing Hindley in his father's favor and separating Catherine from her brother. ? To Catherine and Edgar, Heathcliff also proves destructive. He comes back after three years' absence to enter straight between the husband and wife, forces Catherine to an early grave and drives Edgar into endless pain.
3) Finally the harmony is reestablished when Heathcliff unites with Catherine in death, leaving young Cathy and Hareton to start their young, hopeful life.
2. the structure of the novel ＊ flashback ＊multiple narrator: told mainly by Nelly, to Mr. Lockwood. And part of the story is told through Isabella's letters to Nelly. (supplementary material: Catherine’s diary)
3. Gothic elements ? The Haunted House: ※ old, mysterious, unwelcoming and possibly haunted, wild moors, roughest weather ※ Lockwood’s sleep in what used to be Catherine’s bed is disturbed by a troubling dream in which a child – Catherine – scratches at the window and pleads to be allowed in after roaming the moors for twenty years. Heathcliff’s reaction to this, flinging open the window and begging her to come back again, suggests that the experience was not a dream at all but a visit from a ghost.
《金锁记》描写了一个小商人 家庭出身的女子曹七巧的心 灵变迁历程。七巧做过残疾 人的妻子，欲爱而不能爱， 几乎像疯子一样在姜家过了 30年。在财欲与情欲的压迫 下，她的性格终于被扭曲， 行为变得乖戾，不但破坏儿 子的婚姻，致使儿媳被折磨 而死，还拆散女儿的爱情。 "30年来她戴着黄金的枷。 她用那沉重的枷角劈杀了几 个人，没死的也送了半条命。 "
? 《原野》讲述了青年农民仇虎 的复仇与爱情的故事。农民仇 虎从监狱中逃跑出来，潜回故 乡。若干年前，焦阎王把他的 父亲活埋了，霸占了他家的土 地，将其妹妹卖给了妓院，还 将其恋人金子强娶为儿媳。而 此时焦阎王已死。当他终于杀 了儿时的好友，焦阎王的儿子 大星，不但没有得到任何复仇 的愉快，反而在被追捕逃入树 林时，心理产生巨大的恐惧， 继而精神变态，他终于没能走 出黑林子，而困死其中。
Mrs. Gaskell Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell 1810-1865
visit to Manchester, William Gaskell,
clergyman, close friendship, married 1832.
shocked by the poverty she witnessed in Manchester, charity work 1845 son died, blow, literary career
1865 died of heart attack. Charles Darwin: distant cousin
? ―Mary Barton, a Tale of Manchester Life‖ ? ―Cranford‖ ? ―Ruth‖ ? ―North and South‖
? ―Sylvia's Lovers‖
? ―Wives and Daughters‖
? ―The Life of Charlotte Bronte‖ (b)
Major characters John Barton Mary Barton Henry Carson Jem Wilson
analysis (1). struggle between the labor and the capitalist (2). sympathy for the great miseries of
workers and the Chartist movement
(3). influence of Christian religion:
North and South
analysis ? struggle between workers and capitalists ? clash between the rough, vigorous Northern way of life and the gentler, more ―civilized‖ Southern life ? not all from the upper classes are bad ? belief in peaceful reconciliation: compromise
George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans)
? happy childhood, Isaac, under strict religious influence, early abandoned religious beliefs ? 39, literary career ? English country life, realistic details ? editor of the Westminster Review, a rationalist and reformist journal ? positivists, (scientific knowledge to the problems of society), George Henry Lewes, ? live together as man and wife, defying the rules of Victorian society ? 1880, married John Cross (20 years younger)
? burial in Westminster Abbey rejected due to her denial of Christian faith and "irregular" life with Lewes ? In 1980, on the centenary of her death, a memorial stone was established for her in the Poets’ Corner
? provincial life ―Adam Bede‖ ―The Mill on the Floss‖
―Silas Marner: The Weaver of Raveloe‖
1. major characters (P266) Adam Bede Arthur 2. analysis ? conflict between personal desire and moral duty ? village life, sympathy to simple country folk, disapproval of social inequality Hetty Sorrel Dinah Morris
The Mill on the Floss
Major characters: Maggie Tulliver Philip Wakem
Stephen Guest Tom Tulliver Lucy
Tom and Maggie Tulliver: a brother and sister growing up on the River Floss near a village (both fictional) in the United Kingdom; ending: in the flood, the two drown in an embrace, thus giving the book its Biblical epigraph, ―In their death they were not divided.‖
? autobiographical: "immoral woman" best-remember line: “The happiest women, like the happiest nations, have no history.” ? In this quotation, Eliot reveals the fact women are evidently absent from history. It also implies the struggles and difficulties that a woman has to go through in her progressive life.
Major characters: Silas Marner Dunstan Cass
Eppie Godfrey Cass Molly Farren
structure: dual story line. ? Weaver Silas' story, his loss of humanity and faith and his gradual recovery ? Godfrey Cass' story, his secret marriage,
? climax of the novel: Eppie must choose
between the father who raised her and her biological father
? Eppie's choice
＊ mirror class divisions ＊ symbolizes a moral choice between
the values of each class
? a novel about youthful rebellion: three separate stories, set in a small town--Middlemarch ? Dorothea Brooke --- a young woman of gentry but disgusted with the moral
standards of her class (selfish, superficial conventions) ? Will Ladislaw: romantic, ambitious
analysis of the novel ? much concerned with women's roles and lives ? the unfavorable effects of urban life
? assert the value of rural life
? attack immorality of the petty bourgeois and landowning class
★ particular concern for the destiny of
women: esp. great intelligence, potential and social aspirations ? the tragedy of women lies in their very birth. Their inferior education and limited social life determine that they must depend on men for existence and realization of their goals
? George Meredith: The Egoist 自我主义者 ? Samuel Butler: Erewhon; The Way of All Flesh ? William Collins: The Woman in White, The Moonstone ? Lewis Carroll: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
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