Publishing activities: Victorian Essays
Someone will say, "What does it matter whether or not we know the author of an article on Athenian architecture in the Edinburgh Review for April 1852? All that matters is the essay itself as a reflection of contemporary opinion." But this is not true. In the case of essays on controversial subjects, which means most Victorian essays, an intelligent interpretation often depends on knowing the author's position or his other works. An anonymous paper attacking the Thirty-nine Articles would mean one thing if it were written by T. H. Huxley and something quite different if the author were the Bishop of London. Moreover, the context in which one discusses an essay, and therefore its place in a work of scholarship, can sometimes depend on knowing the contributor and therefore the group he speaks for. Or again, a scholar working on a particular writer has a special need to learn who wrote the principal criticisms of his work; or, writing on a subject like architecture or China, to learn which Victorians were "doing" the articles he finds listed in Poole. Still further, the history of the Victorian short story, which is still to be written, must depend heavily on knowing the authors of a large number of anonymous specimens. And finally, an author index in the sense of a bibliography of writings by each contributor must be built, of course, on thousands of individual identifications. If in some respects it is not important to know that the article on Athenian architecture in the Edinburgh was written by Coventry Patmore, it is important to know that Coventry Patmore wrote an article on Athenian architecture and where it may be read.
It is impossible in a small volume to do justice to so many writers,reflecting nature or humanity from various angles, and sometimes insistingthat a particular angle was the only one from which a true view could beobtained. Some rigorous selection is necessary; and we name here forspecial study Macaulay, Carlyle, Ruskin, who are commonly regarded as thetypical Victorian essayists. This selection does not mean, however, thatsome other group might not be quite as representative of their age andnation. Our chosen authors stand not for Victorian thought but only forcertain interesting phases thereof. Macaulay, the busy man of affairs,voiced the pride of his generation in British traditions. Carlyle livedaloof, grumbling at democracy, denouncing its shams, calling it torepentance. Ruskin, a child of fortune, was absorbed in art till the burdenof the world oppressed him; whereupon he gave his money to the cause ofsocial reform and went himself among the poor to share with them whateverwealth of spirit he possessed. These three men, utterly unlike incharacter, were as one in their endeavor to make modern literature a powerwherewith to uplift humanity. They illustrate, better even than poets ornovelists, the characteristic moral earnestness of the Victorian era.
HydeAs a classic Victorian novel, Robert Louis StevensonÆs The Strange Case of Dr. ... Hyde is often touted as the embodiment of the dual Victorian personalityùrepressed and proper on one hand, and evil and illicitly unleashed on the other. ... Hyde is fiction, it represents a number of real-life Victorian murder cases such as those ascribed t...
What is the particular significance of the female vampire in the Victorian context? Supporting your argument with close reference to relevant passages, discuss the figure of the female vampire in either Carmilla or Dracula, suggesting how it embodies a specifically Victorian awareness of, and anxiety about, female identity, agency and power.