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Language of Gender and Class : Transformation in the Victorian Novel
In this lucid and cogently argued work, Patricia Ingham examines in detail the widely accepted critical clich? 'Examining the representation of gender always involves investigating the representation of class'. Using historical material about 'class', she re-examines six major Victorian novels. Focusing upon language, she explores how stereotypes of gender and class encode cultural myths that reinforce the social status quo.
However, The Language of Gender and Class demonstrates that none of the novelists, either male or female, completely accepts either the stereotyped figures or the authorized story. The figures of the Angel and the Whore are reassessed and modified in Ingham's in-depth reading of the novels. The result is that the treatment of gender is by the 1890s released from its task of containing neutralising class conflict. New accounts of femininity can begin to emerge.
This highly original and unprecedented work will provoke debate and encourage students and scholars in literary, linguistic and gender studies to rethink their views on the Victorian novel.
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Taylor & Francis
May 08, 1996
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