The Emergence of the Short Story in the Nineteenth Century Criticism: The Short Story In Great Britain And Ireland - Essay

Wendell V. Harris (essay date fall 1968)

(Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Harris, Wendell V. “English Short Fiction in the 19th Century.” Studies in Short Fiction 6, no. 1 (fall 1968): 22‐45.

[In the following excerpt, Harris catalogues the prominent short story writers of the period 1830 to 1880, summarizing their representative works, and concludes with an overview of English and Irish Aesthetic fiction of the late nineteenth century.]

I must confess to having suffered considerable uneasiness in contemplating how to approach the great body of short fiction written during the years from 1830 to 1880; the resulting decision was to abandon all pretense of completeness and simply present a representative selection of significant...

(The entire section is 10002 words.)

Dean Baldwin (essay date winter 1993)

(Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Baldwin, Dean. “The Tardy Evolution of the British Short Story.” Studies in Short Fiction 30, no. 1 (winter 1993): 23-33.

[In the following essay, Baldwin probes the economic and social factors that contributed to the slow development of the short story in nineteenth-century Britain.]

One of the more curious anomalies of literary history is why the short story was so late to blossom in Britain. By the 1840s the genre was already established in America, and within two decades it had taken root in Germany, Russia, and France. I am speaking here, of course, of the modern short story, defined loosely as Poe's story of “single effect,” not simply of fiction...

(The entire section is 4708 words.)

Chris Baldick (essay date 1995)

(Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Baldick, Chris. “The End of the Line: The Family Curse in Shorter Gothic Fiction.” In Exhibited by Candlelight: Sources and Developments in the Gothic Tradition, edited by Valeria Tinkler-Villani and Peter Davidson, pp. 147-57. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 1995.

[In the following essay, Baldick examines several short British Gothic tales of the nineteenth century, focusing on the theme of family degeneration in these works.]

My purpose in this article is to examine briefly the fate of shorter Gothic fiction in nineteenth-century Britain, with particular reference to the degree of coherence it manages to sustain by resort to the theme of dynastic extinction.


(The entire section is 4748 words.)