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Violent women and sensation fiction [Elektronisk resurs] crime, medicine and Victorian popular culture / Andrew Mangham.

Mangham, Andrew. (författare)
ISBN 9780230286993
Publicerad: Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan, 2007
Engelska 264 p.
  • E-bok
Innehållsförteckning Sammanfattning Ämnesord
  • List of Illustrations Acknowledgements Introduction Smouldering Fires: Legal, Medical and Journalistic Profiles of the Violent Woman 'The Terrible Chemistry of Nature': Literary Representations of the Road Murder 'Frail Erections': Male Ambition and the Exploitation of Violent Women in the Fiction of Mary Elizabeth Braddon 'Nest-Building Apes': Female Follies and Bourgeois Culture in the Novels of Mrs Henry Wood Hidden Shadows: Dangerous Women and Obscure Diseases in the Novels of Wilkie Collins Conclusion Bibliography Index.
  • This book explores ideas of violent femininity across generic and disciplinary boundaries during the nineteenth century. It aims to highlight how medical, legal and literary narratives shared notions of the volatile nature of women. Mangham traces intersections between notorious legal trials, theories of female insanity, and sensation novels. -- Andrew Mangham's accessible study explores how ideas of violent femininity became integral to the workings of nineteenth-century culture. In the mid-Victorian era, society was rocked by the occurrence of a number of brutal crimes committed by women. In 1854, for example, Mary Ann Brough was tried for cutting the throats of her six children; three years later Madeline Smith allegedly poisoned her fiance by lacing his cocoa with arsenic; and in 1865 Constance Kent confessed to savagely cutting the throat of her stepbrother. The period's psychologists suggested that women's bodies naturally predisposed them to such acts of 'insane violence'. In 1860, Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White spearheaded the popular genre of sensation fiction - a genre that repeatedly portrayed women in the throes of crime and insanity. Andrew Mangham proposes that events in the Victorian courtroom, theories of female insanity and popular sensational narratives had a massive impact on each other. Using the violently explosive woman as his key point of focus, he suggests that medico-legal issues of the Victorian period are crucial to understanding the novels of Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Mrs Henry Wood and Wilkie Collins. 
  • '...a fascinating exploration of Victorian popular fiction, which offers new and sometimes unexpected analyses of sensation novels. His close readings of the novels from a historical perspective through contemporaneous medical essays and criminal laws are one of the many strengths of this very accessible study which will undoubtedly be of interest to many Victorianists.' - Laurence Talairach-Vielmas, 'Mangham's meticulously researched, neatly organized and carefully argued thesis represents the most stimulating contribution to sensation fiction studies to have appeared for quite some time.' - Graham Law, Wilkie Collins Society Journal '...the strength and originality of Mangham's study lies in his successful use of an inter-disciplinary approach whilst dealing with a diverse range of intellectual areas of inquiry.' - Ian Miller, Medical History. 


Violence in literature.  (LCSH)
Women in literature.  (LCSH)
Sensationalism in literature.  (LCSH)
Violence in women.  (LCSH)
English fiction  -- History and criticism -- 19th century. (LCSH)
Sensationalism in literature  -- History and criticism. (LCSH)
Law and literature  -- History -- 19th century -- Great Britain. (LCSH)
Literature and medicine  -- History -- 19th century -- Great Britain. (LCSH)
Journalism and literature  -- History -- 19th century -- Great Britain. (LCSH)


Braddon, M.E. (Mary Elizabeth), 1835-1915. -- Criticism and interpretation.
Wood, Henry, Mrs. 1814-1887. -- Criticism and interpretation.
Collins, Wilkie, 1824-1889 -- Criticism and interpretation.


823.809353 (DDC)
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