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Victorian Studies

Victorian Studies Book List

Cover of 'Inaugural Wounds'

Inaugural Wounds
The Shaping of Desire in Five Nineteenth-Century English Narratives
By Robert E. Lougy

Desire, Jacques Lacan suggests, is a condition or expression of our wounded nature. But because such desire is also unconscious, it can be expressed only indirectly, for what we consciously desire is hardly ever what we really want. Desire makes itself known, but disguises its presence—appearing, for example, in unconscious but repetitive, and sometimes even self-destructive, patterns of behavior.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'Subjects on Display'

Subjects on Display
Psychoanalysis, Social Expectation, and Victorian Femininity
By Beth Newman

Subjects on Display explores a recurrent figure at the heart of many nineteenth-century English novels: the retiring, self-effacing woman who is conspicuous for her inconspicuousness. Beth Newman draws upon both psychoanalytic theory and recent work in social history as she argues that this paradoxical figure, who often triumphs over more dazzling, eye-catching rivals, is a response to the forces that made personal display a vexed issue for Victorian women.

Gender Studies · Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism · Psychology · Women’s Studies

Cover of 'Fortune’s Wheel'

Fortune’s Wheel
Dickens and the Iconography of Women’s Time
By Elizabeth A. Campbell

In the first half of the nineteenth century, England became quite literally a world on wheels. The sweeping technological changes wrought by the railways, steam-powered factory engines, and progressively more sophisticated wheeled conveyances of all types produced a corresponding revolution in Victorian iconography: the image of the wheel emerged as a dominant trope for power, modernity, and progress.

Gender Studies · Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · Literary Criticism, UK

Cover of 'Imperial Bibles, Domestic Bodies'

Imperial Bibles, Domestic Bodies
Women, Sexuality, and Religion in the Victorian Market
By Mary Wilson Carpenter

Of the many literary phenomena that sprang up in eighteenth-century England and later became a staple of Victorian culture, one that has received little attention until now is the “Family Bible with Notes.” Published in serial parts to make it affordable, the Family Bible was designed to enhance the family's status and sense of national and imperial identity.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'Vernon Lee'

Vernon Lee
Aesthetics, History, and the Victorian Female Intellectual
By Christa Zorn

The subject of renewed interest among literary and cultural scholars, Vernon Lee wrote more than forty books, in a broad range of genres, including fiction, history, aesthetics, and travel literature. Early on, Lee established her reputation as a public critic whose unconventional viewpoints stood out among those of her contemporaries.

Gender Studies · Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism · Women’s Studies

Cover of 'Women, Work, and Representation'

Women, Work, and Representation
Needlewomen in Victorian Art and Literature
By Lynn M. Alexander

In Victorian England, virtually all women were taught to sew; needlework was allied with images of domestic economy and with traditional female roles of wife and mother- with home rather than factory. The professional seamstress, however, labored long hours for very small wages creating gowns for the upper and middle classes.

Literary Criticism, Women · Literary Criticism, UK · Women’s History · Women’s Studies · Literary Studies · Victorian Studies

Cover of 'Signs of Their Times'

Signs of Their Times
History, Labor, and the Body in Cobbett, Carlyle, and Disraeli
By John M. Ulrich

From the 1820s through the 1840s, debate raged over what Thomas Carlyle famously termed “the Condition of England Question.” While much of the debate focused on how to remedy the material sufferings of the rural and urban working classes, for three writers in particular--William Cobbett, Thomas Carlyle, and Benjamin Disraeli--the times were marked by an even more pervasive crisis that threatened not only the material lives of workers, but also the very stability of meaning itself.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'The  Complete Works of Robert Browning, Volume XIV'

The Complete Works of Robert Browning, Volume XIV
With Variant Readings and Annotations
By Robert Browning
· Edited by John Berkey, Paul Turner, Michael Bright, and David Ewbank

In seventeen volumes, copublished with Baylor University, this acclaimed series features annotated texts of all of Robert Browning’s known writing. The series encompasses autobiography as well as influences bearing on Browning’s life and career and aspects of Victorian thought and culture. Volume XIV of The Complete Works of Robert Browning records a transition in the poet's career.

Literary Studies · Poetry · Victorian Studies · British Literature

Cover of 'Dark Smiles'

Dark Smiles
Race and Desire in George Eliot
By Alicia Carroll

Although George Eliot has long been described as “the novelist of the Midlands,” she often brought the outer reaches of the empire home in her work. Dark Smiles: Race and Desire in George Eliot studies Eliot's problematic, career-long interest in representing racial and ethnic Otherness.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'Functions of Victorian Culture at the Present Time'

Functions of Victorian Culture at the Present Time
Edited by Christine L. Krueger

We are a century removed from Queen Victoria's death, yet the culture that bears her name is alive and well across the globe. Not only is Victorian culture the subject of lively critical debate, but it draws widespread interest from popular audiences and consumers. Functions of Victorian Culture at the Present Time addresses the theme of the Victorians' continuing legacy and its effect on our own culture and perception of the world.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'Christina Rossetti and Illustration'

Christina Rossetti and Illustration
A Publishing History
By Lorraine Janzen Kooistra

Readers do not always take into account how books that combine image and text make their meanings. But for the Pre-Raphaelite poet Christina Rossetti, such considerations were central. Christina Rossetti and Illustration maps the production and reception of Rossetti's illustrated poetry, devotional prose, and work for children, both in the author's lifetime and in posthumous twentieth-century reprints.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism · Christina Rossetti

Cover of 'Angelic Airs, Subversive Songs'

Angelic Airs, Subversive Songs
Music as Social Discourse in the Victorian Novel
By Alisa Clapp-Itnyre

Music was at once one of the most idealized and one of the most contested art forms of the Victorian period. Yet this vitally important nineteenth-century cultural form has been studied by literary critics mainly as a system of thematic motifs. Angelic Airs, Subversive Songs positions music as a charged site of cultural struggle, promoted concurrently as a transcendent corrective to social ills and as a subversive cause of those ills.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'Educating Women'

Educating Women
Cultural Conflict and Victorian Literature
By Laura Morgan Green

In 1837, when Queen Victoria came to the throne, no institution of higher education in Britain was open to women. By the end of the century, a quiet revolution had occurred: women had penetrated even the venerable walls of Oxford and Cambridge and could earn degrees at the many new universities founded during Victoria's reign. During the same period, novelists increasingly put intellectually ambitious heroines students, teachers, and frustrated scholars—at the center of their books.

Gender Studies · Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism · Women’s Studies

Cover of 'The Rescue of Romanticism'

The Rescue of Romanticism
Walter Pater and John Ruskin
By Kenneth Daley

Valuable and timely in its long historical and critical perspective on the legacy of romanticism to Victorian art and thought, The Rescue of Romanticism is the first book-length study of the close intellectual relationship between Walter Pater and John Ruskin, the two most important Victorian critics of art.

Literary Studies · Victorian Studies · British Literature · Literary Criticism

Cover of 'The  Complete Works of Robert Browning, Volume XII'

The Complete Works of Robert Browning, Volume XII
With Variant Readings and Annotations
By Robert Browning
· Edited by Rita Patteson and Paul Turner

In seventeen volumes, copublished with Baylor University, this acclaimed series features annotated texts of all of Robert Browning’s known writing. The series encompasses autobiography as well as influences bearing on Browning’s life and career and aspects of Victorian thought and culture. A single work, the complex Aristophanes’ Apology (1875), comprises the twelfth volume of The Complete Works of Robert Browning.

Literary Studies · Poetry · Victorian Studies · British Literature