To understand hatred and civility in today's world, argues
Christopher Lane, we should start with Victorian fiction. Although
the word "Victorian" generally brings to mind images of prudish
sexuality and well-heeled snobbery, it has above all become
synonymous with self-sacrifice, earnest devotion, and moral
rectitude. Yet this idealized version of Victorian England is
surprisingly scarce in the period's literature--and its journalism,
sermons, poems, and plays--where villains, hypocrites, murderers,
and cheats of all types abound.
Subjects: Language & Literature
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