Degeneration, Culture and the Novel: 1880-1940 by William P. GreensladeDegeneration, Culture and the Novel: 1880-1940 by William P. Greenslade

Degeneration, Culture and the Novel: 1880-1940

byWilliam P. Greenslade

Paperback | February 11, 2010

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Towards the end of the nineteenth century many affluent and educated people, influenced by developments in medical, biological and psychiatric sciences, became convinced that ignorance, insanity and criminality - even homosexuality and hysteria - were symptoms of the degeneration of the human race. Such theories seemed to provide plausible explanations for disturbing social changes, and new insights into human character and morality. For a time they achieved extraordinary dominance. In this book William Greenslade investigates the impact of degeneration theories on British culture, and on fiction. He traces the difficulties experienced by writers, including Hardy, Gissing, Conrad, Wells, Forster and Woolf, in negotiating their own freedom of interpretation in the light of such theories; he pursues the survival of degenerationism in the work of popular writers Warwich Deeping and John Buchan; and he charts the resilience of its tropes through the 1930s.
Title:Degeneration, Culture and the Novel: 1880-1940Format:PaperbackDimensions:372 pages, 9.02 × 5.98 × 0.83 inPublished:February 11, 2010Publisher:Cambridge University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:052113112X

ISBN - 13:9780521131124


Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. Degeneration; 2. Biological poetics; 3. Degenerate spaces: the urban crisis of the 1880s and The Mayor of Casterbridge; 4. Reversionary tactics; 5. Criminal degeneracy: adventures with Lombroso; 6. Max Nordau and the Degeneration effect; 7. Women and the disease of civilisation: George Gissing's The Whirlpool; 8. The lure of pedigree and the menaces of heredity in Tess of the D'Ubervilles and Jude the Obscure; 9. Race-regeneration; 10. Masculinity, morbidity and medicine: Howards End and Mrs Dalloway; 11. The way out is the way back: the anti-modernists; 12. Postscripts; Notes; Bibliography; Index.