Nineteenth-Century Prose

Articles from Vol. 26, No. 2, Fall

A Nineteenth-Century "Womanist" on Gender Issues: Edith J. Simcox in Her Autobiography of a Shirtmaker
Edith J. Simcox (1844-1901) was a respected public figure who kept a private journal from 1876 to 1900 in which she recorded her activities as scholar, reformer, and businesswoman, as well as secrets of her unrequited love for George Eliot and her...
Bound Women: The Plight of the Other in Florence Nightingale's "Cassandra"
In Cassandra, Florence Nightingale argues against the English woman's relegation to the domestic sphere by imaging her as Other, most vividly through allusions to Chinese footbinding, a statue of the Archangel Michael, and the mythic figure of Cassandra....
Complicating Gender: Contrastive Rhetoric and Reader Response in Teaching Victorian Prose Works
This article outlines a pedagogical solution for students' misconceptions about Victorian constructions of gender: teaching prose works as contrastive rhetoric organized thematically around salient period issues and requiring sustained formalistically--and...
Every Knowledge Has an End: The Cultural Production of the Educated Woman
While the feminization of "Knowledge as Its Own End" has arguably served deleterious material ends, this process has been a "production of the educated woman" even as she has been a product of this process. ********** As its title suggests, my...
Misogyny and Hero Worship: Carlyle's Representation of Men and Women in the French Revolution
When Thomas Carlyle depicts the political struggle in The French Revolution, he is writing more than a "history." His perspective in this work is colored by his Victorian ideology and a traditional political view of men and women, magnified by his...
Performance Anxiety: Science, Sexuality, and Safe Counsel
This article analyzes the relationship between the cultural performance of eugenics and the theatrical nature of this discourse in the use of melodrama in Safe Counsel (1893), a home reference guide to health and hygiene. ********** Beginning...
Sexual Serpents: Ruskin's the Queen of the Air
This article examines the treatment given the goddess Athena by John Ruskin in his series of published lectures entitled The Queen of the Air. The article argues that guskin's depiction of Athena is a very personal one that enables the reader to see...
Silence and Masculinity in Carlyle's Reminiscences
In Reminiscences, Thomas Carlyle uses descriptions of his father, his wife Jane, and the poet Robert Southey to create two gendered dichotomies: silence and speech, and writing and speech. Carlyle associates silence and writing with masculinity, and...
The Construction of Gender: An Introduction
Gender issues are important for understanding many works of nineteenth-century nonfiction prose. More important than conditions of race and class, gender relations in Victorian texts are battlegrounds of power. The ground of gender relations is highly...
The Construction of Masculinity in Victorian Autobiography
Autobiographies have held a central place in Victorian prose since the revitalization of that field of study in the 1950S and 1960S; however, the application of gender studies to this "male-dominated" genre has been neglected. This essay suggests an...
Vernon Lee and the Victorian Aesthetic Movement: "Feminine Souls" and Shifting Sites of Contest
Victorian aesthetic theories offered an alternative to the traditional agonistic discourse associated with the male-dominated public domain. However, those writings established sites of contest that ironically reinscribed "masculine" power within the...

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