Charlotte Brontë and Defensive Conduct: The Author and the Body at Risk

By Janet Gezari | Go to book overview

Notes
Chapter 1
1. E. C. Gaskell, The Life of Charlotte Brontë, ed. Alan Shelston ( Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1975), 94-95. Patrick Brontë does not date this episode, although he gives Maria's age as about ten and Anne's as about four. It probably occurred shortly before Maria and Elizabeth went away to school in July of 1824.
2. The phrase appears in Felicity A. Nussbaum The Autobiographical Subject: Gender and Ideology in Eighteenth-Century England ( Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1989), xix.
3. The Flesh Made Word: Female Figures and Women's Bodies ( New York: Oxford University Press, 1987), 5-6. Michie argues that the female body, so largely present in Victorian sub-genres like pornography and melodrama, is absent from Victorian novels.
4. The Brontës: Their Lives, Friendships and Correspondence in Four Volumes, ed. Thomas J. Wise and John Alexander Symington ( Oxford: Shakespeare Head Press, 1932), vol. 3, 99.
5. "Playing the Other," in Nothing to Do with Dionysus? Athenian Drama in its Social Context ( Princeton, N. J.: Princeton University Press, 1990), 74. The phrase "sensibly alive" comes from William James The Principles of Psychology, ed. Frederick H. Burkhardt et al., 3 vols. ( Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1981), vol. 2, 1067. For a fuller discussion of James's idea of the body, see below.
6. I review the criticism on both sides of this question in my text, below, and in the notes attached to that portion of the text. In Repression in Victorian Fiction: Charlotte Brontë, George Eliot, and Charles Dickens ( Berkeley: University of California Press, 1987), John Kucich departs from the tradition of treating repression in Brontë's novels as distortive by treating it as a "particular Brontëan formulation of desire" and one of its "strategies" (38).
7. The Lesson of Balzac, in Henry James: Literary Criticism, ed. Leon Edel, 2 vols. ( New York: Viking Press, 1984), vol. 1, 118-19.
8. Charles Dickens, Little Dorrit, Book 2, chapter 21.
9. I have the information that "defensive" in its modern sense "appears to have been employed at least since 1965" from one of the editors of the New Oxford English Dictionary, who was kind enough to answer an inquiry about it.
10. London Review of Books, February 4, 1988, 6.
11. London Review of Books, February 18, 1988, 27.
12. Ariel and the Police: Michel Foucault, William James, Wallace Stevens ( Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1988), 136-37.

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