Dickens And The Unreal City: Searching for Spiritual Significance in Nineteenth-Century London

Hardcover | September 15, 2008

byKarl Ashley Smith

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Dickens's London often acts as a complex symbol, composed of numerous sub-symbols, such as crowd, river, railway networks and police systems. This book is particularly interested in how Dickens's treatment of the city allows him to re-examine traditional Christian discourses on the issues of revelation, renunciation and regeneration.

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Dickens's London often acts as a complex symbol, composed of numerous sub-symbols, such as crowd, river, railway networks and police systems. This book is particularly interested in how Dickens's treatment of the city allows him to re-examine traditional Christian discourses on the issues of revelation, renunciation and regeneration.

Format:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 8.78 × 5.69 × 0.82 inPublished:September 15, 2008Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230545238

ISBN - 13:9780230545236

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Introduction: Reading Dickens's Novels After The Waste Land * 'A revelation by which men are to guide themselves': Dickens and Christian Theology * 'The debilitated old house in the city': London as Haunted House * 'A great (and dirty) city': London's Dirt and the Terrors of Obscurity  * 'Angel and devil by turns': The Detective Figure in Bleak House * 'A road of ashes': London's Railways and the Providential Timetable * 'The secrets of the river': The Thames within London * 'A dream of demon heads and savage eyes': The Metropolitan Crowd * Conclusion: 'What is the city over the mountains?'

Editorial Reviews

"Smith's study is particularly valuable for the reminder it offers of the centrality of Christianity to Dickens's worldview. Even more valuable is the evidence Smith marshals regarding the prominent place Christianity continued to hold in various Victorian discourses in which we might not expect it to figure... Smith is an adept close reader of Dickens, and he makes a number of original and intelligent observations about the novels." —Tyson Stolte, University of British Columbia