Dickens's Villains: Melodrama, Character, Popular Culture

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9780199261376: Dickens's Villains: Melodrama, Character, Popular Culture
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This is the first major study of Dickens's villains. They embody, John argues, the crucial fusion between the 'deviant' and 'theatrical' aspects of his writing. Though there have been many studies of both the macabre and the dramatic Dickens, this book sets up a dialogue between these two main strands. John's wider reappraisal of Dickensian character stems from a belief that post-Romantic criticism and theory has been permeated by an anti-theatrical privileging of the mind. Dickens's characters, by contrast, are commonly modelled on passional prototypes from nineteenth-century melodrama. Her- interdisciplinary study locates the rationale for Dickens's melodramatic characters in his political commitment to the principle of cultural inclusivity and his related resistance to 'psychology'. Melodramatic villains function as the key site of Dickens's responses to theatricality, psychology, and cultural inclusiveness. Dickens's Villains suggests a new way of understanding the cultural and political implications of his melodramatic aesthetics.

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Review:

Essential contribution to Dickens criticism (R. Ducharme, Choice)

John... delivers a critical wallop in this elegantly written, thoroughly researched, and persuasively argued book (Mark M. Hennelly, Jr., Dickens Quarterly)

a wonderfully intelligent and wide-ranging study which offers a fundamental challenge not simply to our view of his criminal characters, but to our understanding of the ideology of his aesthetics... It is cause for celebration indeed to know that even now Juliet John is at work developing implications of this splendid book in a further study of Dickenss cultural politics. Dickenss Villains will, I confidently predict, significantly alter the ways in which we read Dickens. (Paul Schlicke, The Dickensian, 2002)

the most exciting study of Dickens for years, brilliantly drawing together approaches from psychology and from popular theatre, and leading to a major revaluation of Dickens's conception of character. I confidently predict that Dickens studies will never be quite the same as this book makes its impact (Paul Schlicke, The Dickens Forum)

A shrewd investigation... [John has the] capacity to see the point of Dickens's anti-intellectualism without for a moment compromising her own scholarly rigour. (Dinah Birch, Times Literary Supplement)

Dickens studies and critics of popular culture will owe an enormous debt to Dickens's Villains... this book is not just a ground breaking study of Dickens's villains in relation to popular cultural forms... [it] is important because it rethinks Dickens's identity as a novelist, a cultural critic and within the disciplines of literary and cultural studies. It enables Dickens to be thought about in entirely new cultural and philosophical contexts. (Susan Rowland, Newsletter of the Association for Research in Popular Fictions)

a strong, provocative contribution to Dickens studies, to our deeper understanding of his debt to the complex protean creature that is popular culture - and his contribution to it. (Adrian Poole, Review of English Studies)

a major, original... reconsideration of undervalued dimensions of Dickens's ideology and aesthetics... Dickenss Villains is one of the freshest interpretations of Dickens in a generation

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9780198184614: Dicken's Villains: Melodrama, Character, Popular Culture

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ISBN 10:  0198184611 ISBN 13:  9780198184614
Publisher: OUP Oxford, 2001
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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2003. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. This is the first major study of Dickens's villains. They embody, John argues, the crucial fusion between the 'deviant' and 'theatrical' aspects of his writing. Though there have been many studies of both the macabre and the dramatic Dickens, this book sets up a dialogue between these two main strands. John's wider reappraisal of Dickensian character stems from a belief that post-Romantic criticism and theory has been permeated by an anti-theatrical privileging ofthe mind. Dickens's characters, by contrast, are commonly modelled on passional prototypes from nineteenth-century melodrama. Her- interdisciplinary study locates the rationale for Dickens's melodramatic characters in his political commitment to the principle of cultural inclusivity and his relatedresistance to 'psychology'. Melodramatic villains function as the key site of Dickens's responses to theatricality, psychology, and cultural inclusiveness. Dickens's Villains suggests a new way of understanding the cultural and political implications of his melodramatic aesthetics. Seller Inventory # AAV9780199261376

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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2003. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. This is the first major study of Dickens's villains. They embody, John argues, the crucial fusion between the 'deviant' and 'theatrical' aspects of his writing. Though there have been many studies of both the macabre and the dramatic Dickens, this book sets up a dialogue between these two main strands. John's wider reappraisal of Dickensian character stems from a belief that post-Romantic criticism and theory has been permeated by an anti-theatrical privileging ofthe mind. Dickens's characters, by contrast, are commonly modelled on passional prototypes from nineteenth-century melodrama. Her- interdisciplinary study locates the rationale for Dickens's melodramatic characters in his political commitment to the principle of cultural inclusivity and his relatedresistance to 'psychology'. Melodramatic villains function as the key site of Dickens's responses to theatricality, psychology, and cultural inclusiveness. Dickens's Villains suggests a new way of understanding the cultural and political implications of his melodramatic aesthetics. Seller Inventory # AAV9780199261376

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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2003. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. This is the first major study of Dickens's villains. They embody, John argues, the crucial fusion between the 'deviant' and 'theatrical' aspects of his writing. Though there have been many studies of both the macabre and the dramatic Dickens, this book sets up a dialogue between these two main strands. John's wider reappraisal of Dickensian character stems from a belief that post-Romantic criticism and theory has been permeated by an anti-theatrical privileging ofthe mind. Dickens's characters, by contrast, are commonly modelled on passional prototypes from nineteenth-century melodrama. Her- interdisciplinary study locates the rationale for Dickens's melodramatic characters in his political commitment to the principle of cultural inclusivity and his relatedresistance to 'psychology'. Melodramatic villains function as the key site of Dickens's responses to theatricality, psychology, and cultural inclusiveness. Dickens's Villains suggests a new way of understanding the cultural and political implications of his melodramatic aesthetics. Seller Inventory # LIE9780199261376

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