Mobile Homes, Fallen Furniture, and the Dickens Cure

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Title Mobile Homes, Fallen Furniture, and the Dickens Cure
Author Ellison, David Alex
Journal Name South Atlantic Quarterly
Year Published 2009
Place of publication United States
Publisher Duke University Press
Abstract From the beginning of his career, Dickens conceived of the home and in particular the hearth as the reception point for his distinctive narrative transmissions. The relationship between writer and reader was imagined in terms of the most intimate and residentially entrenched exchanges even while Dickens contemplated the very profitable consequences of mass proliferation. In order to contextualize Dickens's entrenchment, this essay explores the means by which he fostered an aesthetic of domestic reception. Here the hearth is seen in lights both familiar and unfamiliar, as source and symbol of Victorian virtue, but also as an integral component of a discursive ensemble integrating reader, furnishings, and architecture. In novels like Dombey and Son, Dickens considers the vexing problem of domestic disquiet—the noisy and volatile insecurity of the middle classes at home—while offering a respite, a cure that briefly bound rapt readers to their chairs.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
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Copyright Statement Copyright 2009 Duke University Press. The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Volume 108
Issue Number 1
Page from 87
Page to 114
ISSN 1527-8026
Date Accessioned 2010-01-05
Language en_AU
Research Centre Griffith Centre for Cultural Research
Faculty Faculty of Humanities and Social Science
Subject British and Irish Literature
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1

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