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Victorian Realism - Essay Example

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The essay "Victorian Realism" talks about how the Industrial Revolution was the cause of a great time of change, also referred to in literary circles as the Victorian period…
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Victorian Realism
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Download file to see previous pages The rising middle class began breaking down the old class structure that had formed the backbone of European society for so much of its history just as advances in technology and machinery touched off a new debate regarding the existence of the soul and the nature of God. Charles Darwin’s Theory of Evolution touched off new debate as well regarding the veracity of the Bible itself. With the availability of new jobs in the cities, traditional women’s roles were also being challenged as more and more young women sought better futures for themselves within the factory setting. The public was becoming more and more involved in the debates being waged, particularly as newspapers and other periodicals became more prevalent with the introduction of the printing press, introducing and maintaining widespread discourse in the political and social issues of the day. “The Victorian novel, with its emphasis on the realistic portrayal of social life, represented many Victorian issues in the stories of its characters” (“The Victorian Age”, 2007). While the initial reaction to these changes was a nostalgic clinging to the past, now referred to as the Romantic period, later Victorian writers concentrated on presenting their worlds in a more realistic frame of mind based upon the world that was actually around them. To gain an understanding of the change that took place, it is helpful to understand what is meant by Romantic and what is meant by Realism and then apply these concepts to a work of the period, such as Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the D’urbervilles.
Although the Romantic Period would seem to be so named because of an unusual fascination with stories of love and what we consider ‘romance’ today, the actual literary movement was characterized by a complete ideology that focused on the natural, picturesque and the fantastic as they might have been understood in an idealized Golden Age of society. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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