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Toward a working-class canon : literary criticism in British working-class periodicals, 1816-1858

Author: Paul Thomas Murphy
Publisher: Columbus : Ohio State University Press, ©1994.
Series: Studies in Victorian life and literature.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
In the first comprehensive book covering working-class views of literature during the first half of the nineteenth century, Paul Thomas Murphy argues that the documented rise in working-class political consciousness was accompanied by an important and largely undocumented rise in working-class literary consciousness. Furthermore, Murphy contends that the journalists of working-class periodicals struggled to fashion  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Murphy, Paul Thomas, 1957-
Toward a working-class canon.
Columbus : Ohio State University Press, ©1994
(OCoLC)609805576
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Paul Thomas Murphy
ISBN: 0814206549 9780814206546
OCLC Number: 30624732
Description: x, 211 pages ; 24 cm.
Series Title: Studies in Victorian life and literature.
Responsibility: Paul Thomas Murphy.

Abstract:

In the first comprehensive book covering working-class views of literature during the first half of the nineteenth century, Paul Thomas Murphy argues that the documented rise in working-class political consciousness was accompanied by an important and largely undocumented rise in working-class literary consciousness. Furthermore, Murphy contends that the journalists of working-class periodicals struggled to fashion literary standards for their class to form a working-class canon. In this original and stimulating study, Murphy pays close attention to what writers and editors of these periodicals had to say about specific literary genres, the literary and stylistic values they adopted, and the figures they saw as their models as well as those they rejected. Murphy provides a sense of working-class literacy and a brief history of the working-class press from 1816 to 1858. He then focuses on the views of fiction, poetry, and drama that appeared in the journals. Noting that working-class writers and editors actively sought to define for themselves the spiritual and political role literature played for an emerging working class, Murphy concludes that while there was no uniform working-class interpretation of literature, working-class journalists conducted a lively and continuing debate about literature, and that their agreements and disagreements show a thriving and evolving aesthetic. Toward a Working Class Canon offers both serious appraisals of now-forgotten writers and fresh and important views of the most well-known writers. It is a major contribution to Victorian studies, canon studies, British labor history, and the history of journalism.

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Primary Entity

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