Perceptions of Childhood in the Victorian Fin-de-Siècle

Perceptions of Childhood in the Victorian Fin-de-Siècle

Hardback Published on: 02/03/2011
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Synopsis

This book reads Victorian fin de siècle literature through the medium of perceptions of childhood. It examines the connection between ‘monstrous’ and idealistic symbolic representations of childhood represented by key cultural discourses of the Victorian fin-de-siècle. Specifically, anxieties about change are linked closely to anxieties about childhood, procreation, and maturation in a range of Children’s and Adults’ texts from the 1860s to the 1890s. The book demonstrates the ways in which the emergent social movements which have come to define and represent change in the fin-de-siècle period were inherently concerned with the ideas of childhood and parenthood and the ways in which they represented both the promise and the threat of the future. The texts are arranged by theme, and grouped according to whether they are seen primarily as intended for children, or for adults. In texts intended for adult readers, images of childhood are more covert and more metaphorical than those texts aimed at child readers, in which overt pedagogical concerns are often brought to bear. Nothing embodies the idea of the future more than the children who stand as a bridge between ‘now’ and ‘then.’ This book analyses the connections between Victorian perceptions of childhood and the anxieties and upheavals of the Victorian Fin-de-Siècle.

  • Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
  • ISBN: 9781443826884
  • Number of pages: 170
  • Dimensions: 212 x 148 mm

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