Gender and Ventriloquism in Victorian and Neo-Victorian Fiction: Passionate Puppets

Hardcover | September 18, 2012

byHelen Davies

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Is ventriloquism just for dummies? What is at stake in neo-Victorian fiction's desire to "talk back" to the nineteenth century? This book explores the sexual politics of dialogues between the nineteenth century and contemporary fiction, offering a new insight into the concept of ventriloquism as a textual and metatextual theme in literature.

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Is ventriloquism just for dummies? What is at stake in neo-Victorian fiction's desire to "talk back" to the nineteenth century? This book explores the sexual politics of dialogues between the nineteenth century and contemporary fiction, offering a new insight into the concept of ventriloquism as a textual and metatextual theme in liter...

HELEN DAVIES is an associate lecturer in English Literature at Leeds Metropolitan University, UK. She has published articles on neo-Victorianism, contemporary women's writing and Oscar Wilde. She is currently on the executive committee of the Contemporary Women's Writing Association and is the associate editor on neo-Victorian literat...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:224 pages, 9.13 × 5.71 × 0.8 inPublished:September 18, 2012Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:023034366X

ISBN - 13:9780230343665

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Table of Contents

Introduction: The Victorians for dummies? Talking back to the nineteenth centuryVoices from the Past: Rethinking the Ventriloquial MetaphorVictorian Ventriloquists: Henry James and George Du MaurierSirens and Svengalis: Nights at the Circus, Alias Grace and ClaraQueering the dummy/ventriloquist dichotomy: Oscar Wilde and ventriloquial influenceSexual re-scripting: Ventriloquial repetitions and transformations in Sarah Waters' Tipping the Velvet and AffinityTalking to ourselves? Ventriloquial criticism and readership in neo-Victorian fictionAfterword: Voices beyond the Victorian era? Wesley Stace and ventriloquismNotes Bibliography

Index

Editorial Reviews

"Definitions of neo-Victorianism within a theoretical space of performativity frequently fall into a conceptual trap which recycles the motifs of Judith Butler in an uncritical fashion. Helen Davies's book admirably challenges this position by revitalising the trope of ventriloquism in neo-Victorian fiction and criticism. This is a lively, provocative and engaging book that makes a stimulating contribution to the field. Davies's own scholarly voice is confident, articulate and alive, and her self-reflective comments on the position of the critic as reader make important points for future researchers." - Mark Llewellyn, John Anderson Research Chair in English, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK