Cover image for A companion to the Victorian novel
A companion to the Victorian novel
Brantlinger, Patrick, 1941-
Publication Information:
Malden, Mass. : Blackwell, 2002.
Physical Description:
xii, 513 pages ; 26 cm.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PR871 .C643 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



The Companion to the Victorian Novel provides contextual and critical information about the entire range of British fiction published between 1837 and 1901.

Provides contextual and critical information about the entire range of British fiction published during the Victorian period.
Explains issues such as Victorian religions, class structure, and Darwinism to those who are unfamiliar with them.
Comprises original, accessible chapters written by renowned and emerging scholars in the field of Victorian studies.
Ideal for students and researchers seeking up-to-the-minute coverage of contexts and trends, or as a starting point for a survey course.

Author Notes

Patrick Brantlinger is Rudy Professor of English at Indiana University, Bloomington. He is the author of The Reading Lesson: The Threat of Mass Literacy in Nineteenth-Century British Fiction (1998), Fictions of State: Culture and Credit in Britain 1694-1994 (1996), Rule of Darkness: British Literature and Imperialism 1830-1914 (1990), and Crusoe's Footprints: Cultural Studies in Britain and America (1990).

William B. Thesing is Professor of English at the University of South Carolina, Columbia. He is the author of The London Muse: Victorian Poetic Responses to the City (1982) and the editor of five volumes in Gale's Dictionary of Literary Biography: Victorian Prose Writers before 1867 (1986), Victorian Prose Writers after 1867 (1987), Victorian Women Poets (1998), British Short-Fiction Writers, 1880-1914: The Realist Tradition (1994), and Late Nineteenth- and Early Twentieth-Century British Women Poets (2001). He recently edited Caverns of Night: Coal Mines in Art, Literature, and Film (2000).

Reviews 1

Choice Review

The Victorian novel remains one of the richest fields of critical discussion in English literature. The editors direct this excellent companion to "students, teachers, and general readers at all levels," and the 27 contributors write throughout with clarity and accessibility. The essays are divided into three parts: "Historical Contexts and Cultural Issues" treats publishing, education, class, psychology, empire, religion, science, law, gender, visual culture, theater, and technology; "Forms of the Victorian Novel" considers divisions such as detective, historical, sensation, gothic, regional, and industrial novels; and "Victorian and Modern Theories of the Novel and the Reception of Novel and Novelists Then and Now" joins ideas about how Victorians themselves thought of the art of fiction with ideas about how later generations, in novels and film, thought of Victorian fiction. Each chapter includes both references and a helpful list of titles for further reading. These are wonderful essays, most of them written by important scholars in the field. However, despite the wealth of "cultural contexts" it offers, this collection has the effect of prolonging the unfortunate division between Victorian fiction and Victorian poetry. These days, absolutely everything in Victorian culture becomes a context for Victorian fiction, except poetry--a peculiar state of affairs. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. All collections. S. C. Dillon Bates College

Table of Contents

Introduction Reed Ueda (Tufts University) Introduction. Notes on Contributors
Part I Historical Contexts and Cultural Issues:
1 The Publishing WorldKelly Mays
2 Education, Literacy, and the Victorian ReaderJonathan Rose
3 Money, The Economy, and Social ClassesRegenia Gagnier
4 Victorian PsychologyAthena Vretttos
5 Empire, Race, and the Victorian NovelDeirdre David
6 The Victorian Novel and ReligionHilary Fraser
7 Scientific AscendancyJohn Kucich
8 Technology and Information: Accelerating DevelopmentsChristopher Keep
9 Laws, The Legal World, and PoliticsJohn Reed
10 Geneer, Politics, and Women's RightsHilary Schor
11 The Other Arts: Victorian Visual CultureJeffrey Spear
12 Imagined Audiences: The Novelist and the StageReneta Kobetts-Miller
Part II Forms of the Victorian Novel:
13 Newgate Novel to Detective FictionF.S. Scjhwarzbach
14 The Historical NovelJohn Bowen
15 The Sensation NovelWinifred Hughes
16 The BildungsromanJohn R. Maynard
17 The Gothic Romance in the Victorian PeriodCannon Schmitt
18 The Provencial or Regional NovelIan Duncan
19 Industrial and 'Condition-of-England's NovelsJames Richard Simmons
20 Children's FictionLewis Roberts
21 Victorian Science FictionPatrick Brantlinger
Part III Victorian and Modern Theories of the Novel and the Reception of Novels and Novelists Then and Now:
22 The Receptions of Charlotte BronteCharles Dickens and George Eliot and Thomas Hardy: Elizabeth Langland
23 Victorian Theories of the NovelJoseph Childers
24 Modern and Postmodern Theories of Prose FictionAudrey Jaffe
25 The Afterlife of the Victorian Novel: Novels about NovelsAnne Humpherys
26 The Victorian Novel in Film and TelevisionJocelyn Marsh