The gothic has a close affinity to the literature of the fantastic which is about the not-yet or what is to be achieved in the future. It is defined as a ‘fantastic escapist genre’ as it enables female writers “escape from powerlessness, from meaninglessness, from lack of identity except through the performance of unstable and unsatisfying roles, and from the covert perception of the hollowness of the promises of social mythology about women’s lives,” to use the words of Kay J. Mussell (qtd. in Vokey 5). Yet, the gothic’s engagement with the fantastic raises the question about its potential to criticize the ideological practices of the dominant discourse. Glennis Byron and David Punter define the gothic genre as “an escapist form, in which
Emma and Elizabeth are special among other heroines as Emma is able to examine her own state of thinking of being in love to the realization she is not, and Elizabeth shows her own introspection in the process of thinking and re-thinking. Another important feature of Austen’s novels is heroine’s learning experience as a centre of the novel. From the studied literature, it follows that the learning experience leads to the problematic of ‘self’ which Austen’s fallible heroines deal throughout the novels. Jane Austen tried to explore mainly the fields of self-realization and self-knowledge, which means Emma and Elizabeth must overcome their mistakes to find what is right and only then they can reach the ‘self’ development. The first part of the thesis also showed the critical view on the heroines.
Deterioration of rural England, rapid rise of middle class and constant pressure towards unavoidable social and political reform were common themes in writing, Brontë’s included. (Abrams 1999:153) She wrote about the changing times in a darker and unconventional way using eerie and paranormal elements, depicting the struggles uniquely, and simultaneously criticising the majority of the burning questions and problems of the time. All Brontë sisters resorted to the Gothic novel genre in their writing, but they also greatly expanded the genre and went beyond it to accommodate their ideas and by doing so they reinvented and expanded the Female gothic into the New Gothic. This paper explores the gothic literary complex Emily Brontë used to write Wuthering Heights. The focus is on the elements of gothic and how their abundance in this work successfully enables the author to criticize all aspects of the Victorian era and depart form the established Victorian values.
The re-appearance of Female Gothic also coincides with the rise of postmodern theory that aims to legitimize the re-development of the long trivialized genres of the past. Accordingly, Fred Botting says: “Marginalized genres have begun to prevail over their canonized counterparts” (qtd. in Tavassoli and Ghasemi 110). In fact, since its inception in the eighteenth-century, the gothic genre has been maligned as a ‘marginalized’ literary form in relation to nineteenth-century realistic literature narratives of Daniel Defoe and Samuel Richardson, which mark the outset of the century. Juliann Fleenor, in The Female Gothic, further elucidates this: “The Gothic has generally had a negative critical reception.
In the novel Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë, the reader is presented with depictions of many aspects of Brontë’s own life. The novel is a classic example of a Bildungsroman, written in the Victorian period, and many characteristics are focal in the text, one of which was of course gender inequality, as men seemed to rule the society in which Jane Eyre lived in. A woman couldn’t be successful in this period without a powerful man. Jane Eyre however, sought to prove everyone wrong as she attempted to abolish the rules of this Victorian society. “The novel suggests possibilities for gender subversion within a seemingly normative romance narrative” (Godfrey, 2005).
The Conflict between Romanticism and Realism in Sense and Sensibility Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility is a story of Elinor and Marianne Dashwood, sisters who individually speak to the sense and sensibility. In other words, the film is drawn between two cultural movements; the romanticism and the realism. Realism carries a message that portrays circumstances sensibly, while romanticism represents messages by utilizing fiction. Romanticism concentrates on plot, overstatements, illustration and feelings. However, realism concentrates on characters, subtle elements, objectivity and the partition of creator and storyteller.
Numerous schools of criticisms have attempted to find the meaning behind most of our favorite childhood stories. From Marxist who pursue the idea of social classes portrayed in literary works, to Psychoanalysts who depict the sexual tensions and desires that are subconsciously embedded behind characters’ motives and actions, to Historicists who try to show the preservation of tradition in stories, many different concepts exist for each fairy tale. The Feminist school of criticism greatly focuses on unveiling the patriarchal system and sexist roles that are displayed in stories, and more specifically, fairytales. Four versions of the well-known fairytale of The Little Mermaid will be compared and discussed while focusing on many distinctive
Pride and Prejudice Literary Essay The novel Pride and Prejudice, written by Jane Austen, is widely known as the development story of Miss Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Fitz William Darcy and how these characters represent society. Elizabeth and Darcy create a forceful impression on readers and their relationship dominates the novel, which is due to Jane Austen using their character development to foreshadow her perspective on individuals in society. Elizabeth and Darcy begin with a mutual distaste for each other, due to Darcy's pride in his social economic status and Elizabeth's prejudice that she holds over aristocratic members of society. Austen uses the mutual distaste of the main characters to set the plot of the novel. Throughout the characters
AINSLEY STOLLAR ENGL 390 ESSAY #1 1250-1750 words The Physical House Versus the Symbolic Enclosure Analyzing Structure in the Film Sense and Sensibility The film Sense and Sensibility (dir. Ang Lee) gives the audience a visual representation of one of the most well-known Jane Austen novels by producing delicate scenes hidden with mountains of symbolism and major themes straight from the pages of the book. While character representation is crucial for any film adaptation, I chose to focus camera tricks, colors in the film, and dialogue relate to a larger theme of a women’s constraints in the physical house and the symbolic enclosure. Early nineteenth century culture was ripe with both physical and psychological stereotypes thrust upon the female gender, creating a very rigid
Sexuality In this section the repulsion towards natural women, especially in the works of J.K. Huysmans A Rebour and Oscar Wilde’s Dorian Gray will be examined. As the work of Huysmans engages into the discourse of artificial (also “technological”) femininity vs. natural femininity several times it is at hand that my analysis will center upon this theme. Nevertheless, throughout the passage references will be given to the work of Dorian Gray, showing the parallels in the perceptions of women to Des Esseintes. Afterwards, I would like to explore the portrayal of Gustave Moreau’s Salomé in Huysmans work, as I have found particular interest in her meaning to Des Esseintes. 2.1 Sexuality in A Rebour Des Esseintes’ sexuality is traversed by multiple episodes with actresses, singers and prostitutes, but is altered by his neurosis; the artificial woman being superior to the natural woman.