Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Rise of the Novel essays

Rise of the Novel essays William Warner in his essay The Elevation of the Novel in England: Hegemony and Literary Theory from which the above quotation is taken outlines his theory of a dependence on the part of Fielding and Richardson on the novels of earlier writers despite their attempts to devalue their work. In this essay I will examine this relationship from Warner's standpoint and show that it is a relationship is both complex and paradoxical. Prior to his first novel in 1749, Samuel Richardson (1689-1761) published, in 1740-41, an advisory work called Letters Written to and for Particular Friends. This publication intended to instil in the reader a correct code of conduct or "how to think and act justly and prudently in the common concerns of life". With the publication of the 1749 novel "Pamela: Or Virtue Rewarded, Richardson fully assumed his role as an author expounding the moralistic values of the bourgeois society to which he had ascended from more humble beginnings. This role would become impounded by his two subsequent novels Clarissa: or the History of a Young Lady (1747-48) and The History of Sir Charles Grandison (1753-54). Henry Fielding (1707-1754) had published poems, satirical pieces, comedies, farces and ballad operas before he published his first novel. Incensed at the publication of Richardson's Pamela, Fielding set out to ridicule his contemporaries work with the often hilarious An apology for the life of Mrs Shamala Andrews (1741). Though apparently antagonistic to Richardson in this regard, his later novel Tom Jones (1748) is prefaced with all of the moralistic overtones that became synonimous with Richardson and built on the same foundations of judgement and opinionated moral comment....

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