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The Oxford English Literary History: Volume 8: 1830-1880: The Victorians: Victorians 1830-1880 Vol 8 Hardcover – 10 Oct 2002


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 648 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford (10 Oct. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0198184476
  • ISBN-13: 978-0198184478
  • Product Dimensions: 22.1 x 3.8 x 14.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 746,384 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

... the personal interrelations and literary filiations of the novelists and main prose writers are wonderfully evoked, so that one gets a good idea, for example, of their takes on one another. The cultural feel of whole communities is conveyed. Davis organises it all magisterially: the inwardness with which he grasps aims and achievements suggests the impressions of a contemporary. (Essays in Criticism)

By insisting that what synthesizes the Victorians is their search for a synthesis, Davis's first-rate book, for all that it is often compellingly immersed in the matter of particular texts and local discourses, triumphantly attains a balloon's-eye view of their literary achievements. (The Review of English Studies)

... skilfully demonstrates how the social and intellectual ructions of the period affected literary form. (The Review of English Studies)

... The volume is especially noteworthy for the generous place granted to the voices of contemporary writers and thinkers. (Virginia Quarterly Review)

Davis presents a neat survey of the key social, economic, and intellectual trends which shaped the Victorian period's literature. (Virginia Quarterly Review)

The Victorians is a magnificent achievement. Teachers, students and serious readers will return frequently to it guided by Davis's comprehensive learning and subtle readings of one of the richest periods of literature in our history. (Reference Reviews)

One feature of the book that is of particular significance to librarians is the author's awareness of publication matters. (Reference Reviews)

... all readers will be impressed by the new knowledge and insights the author offers, and will return to the texts refreshed. (Reference Reviews)

Davis writes with clarity and forthrightness and his comprehensive knowledge and the subtlety of his critical views, his incorporation of some new developments in literary criticism, and his enthusiasm for the achievements of the Victorians, are features that will impress readers. (Reference Reviews)

... a rich, critical discussion of case studies and a wide survey of works of diverse literary genres ... it "informs" us and fleshes out what could otherwise be dry and remote. (Reference Reviews)

For the student or general reader who is relatively new to the period, The Victorians offers a lucid, informative, and entertaining account of a richly various and complex literary culture. (Reviews in History (online))

... one of the undoubted merits of Davis's volume is that the reader is never allowed to forget that literary works are special sorts of documents; his attention to questions of form and language, so often forgotten in broad-stroke literary histories, is especially commendable. (Reviews in History (online))

Davis wears his learning lightly, moving elegantly between his various source materials to provide an informative and highly readable narrative. (Reviews in History (online))

The Victorians is a magnificent achievement. Teachers, students, and serious readers will return frequently to it guided by Davis's comprehensive learning and subtle readings of one of the richest periods of literature in our history. (Brontë Studies)

... a rich, critical discussion of case studies and a wide survey of works of diverse literary genres ... [Davis's] comprehensive knowledge and the subtlety of his critical views, his incorporation of some new developments in literary criticism, and his enthusiasm for the achievements of the Victorians, are unlikely to leave many of his readers unimpressed: he will send most of them back to savour the new knowledge and insight he offers. (Brontë Studies)

Highly impressive. (The Tennyson Research Bulletin)

The Victorians, one of the first volumes to appear in the new series, is a brilliant book. It would be a pity if contemporary scepticism about literary history meant that Philip Davis doesn't get the credit he deserves for dealing in such a masterly way with the vast quantity of material he tackles ... Anyone with a serious interest in the period will find it immensely rewarding. (Charlotte Mitchell, The Spectator)

Is it possible to contain the literary history of the Victorians within a single volume? Philip Davis has risen to the challenge with passionate energy. Authors, texts, ideas and observations crowd the pages of this dense book ... Running through Philip Davis's scholarship is a winningly partisan advocacy of the moral seriousness of Victorian writing. He does not stand aloof from the challenges he describes. The result is a book that animates a bank of information with the force of personal commitment. It will stand as a persuasive affirmation of why the Victorians are still worth reading. (Dinah Birch, Times Literary Supplement)

This is an imaginative, penetrating, often idiosyncratic history, written with brio ... Davis has written a book of breathtaking depth as well as breadth. (Ben Schwarz, Atlantic Monthly)

[A] magnificent work of literary engagement and partisanship ... The development and mission of realism in the novel make up only one of the areas on which Davis sheds light, and he has marvelous chapters on nature, mind, religion, publishing, theatre, and poetry. His prose possesses an insistent spiritual vigor and is free of the ham-fisted parlance and empty cunning of `lit-crit'.' (Katherine Powers, Boston Globe)

About the Author

Jonathan Bate (General Editor): FBA, Professor of English Literature, Warwick University, well known as a scholar of Shakespeare and the Renaissance, and of the Romantic period. The UK s leading exponent of ecocriticism . Most recent books: Shakespeare and Ovid, the Arden Titus Andronicus, The Genius of Shakespeare, a novel about William Hazlitt called The Cure for Love and The Song of the Earth. General editor of the Oxford English Literary History, for which he is writing the volume on the Elizabethans, and he is also engaged in a major biography of John Clare.


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