The Sensation Novel Feminist Criticism - Essay

Feminist Criticism

(Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism)

Jeanne B. Elliott (essay date 1976)

SOURCE: "A Lady to the End: The Case of Isabel Vane," in Victorian Studies, Vol. XIX, No. 3, March, 1976, pp. 329-44.

[In the essay that follows, Elliott evaluates the ways in which the attitudes and influences of a period are revealed through its popular literature. Focusing particularly on East Lynne by Mrs. Henry Wood, Elliott discusses the presence of a desire for change in women's roles in the domestic novels of the 1800s.]

Many of the best-known novels of the Victorian period are distinguished by a concern for the problems of women's duties and spheres of action. Perhaps the most brilliant...

(The entire section is 35665 words.)