Based on close readings of five Victorian novels, Hallum presents an original study of the interaction between popular fiction, the marriage market and the aesthetic movement. She uses the texts to trace the development of aestheticism, examining the differences between the authors, including their approach, style and gender. Wider issues concerning Victorian womanhood, marriage and commodity culture are also explored. This book will be of interest to scholars of book history as well as literature and nineteenth-century society.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Art of Female Beauty in Context 1. ‘Two Lovers to Decide their Rival Claim to the Possession of My Person’: Rhoda Broughton’s Cometh up as a Flower 2. The ‘Aesthetics of Love’ in George Meredith’s The Egoist 3. ‘A Lovely Woman Whom He Hath Bought’: The Market for Aestheticized Commodities in Ouida’s Moths 4. ‘I Love Beauty – And I Study it wherever I find it, Dead or Living’: Marie Corelli’s Wormwood 5. ‘Love for Love’s Sake’: George du Maurier’s Trilby Conclusion: Beyond Beauty
Kirby-Jane Hallum received her PhD in English from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. Her research interests lie in the long 19th century, with particular focus on women's and popular literature, and her recent publications in Literature Compass, Women’s Writing and Victorian Network reflect dual interests in Britain and New Zealand. She is currently embarking on a new project regarding Britain's influence on colonial New Woman writing.