Food in Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism: Food And Sex - Essay

Helen B. Ellis (essay date 1980)

(Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Ellis, Helen B. “Food, Sex, Death, and the Feminine Principle in Keats's Poetry.” English Studies in Canada, 6, no. 1 (spring 1980): 56-74.

[In the following essay, Ellis discusses the pervasive association between feasting and sexual fulfillment in Keats's poetry.]

In his perceptive discussion of Keats's letters, Lionel Trilling notes the pervasiveness of ingestive imagery used by Keats, and also the ambivalence many readers feel toward such imagery:

It is surely possible to understand what led Yeats to speak of Keats as a boy with his face pressed to the window of a sweetshop. The mild and not unsympathetic derogation...

(The entire section is 9105 words.)

Simon Edwards (essay date 1990)

(Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Edwards, Simon. “Anorexia Nervosa versus the Fleshpots of London: Rose and Nancy in Oliver Twist.” In Dickens Studies Annual 19 (1990): 49-64.

[In the following essay, Edwards examines the interaction of food and sexuality in the formation of identity in Oliver Twist.]

While everyone recognises the importance of food in Dickens' novels, there are, to my knowledge, only two essays which have attempted to assess its role critically. Barbara Hardy has discussed the moral significance of feasting and hospitality in Great Expectations. Ian Watt, noting the same lack of critical interest in the subject, offers a suggestive psychoanalytic account of...

(The entire section is 6562 words.)