Victorian Era

The Victorian era ranged roughly from 1837 (the coronation of Queen Victoria) until 1901 (Queen Victoria’s death). This era is known for its adherence to rules of decorum, its contradictory ideas about scientific progress and mysticism, and its works of fiction. Many novelists that are still famous today wrote during the Victorian Era.

This time period overlaps heavily with the Realist Movement and includes La Belle Époque. Novels and fiction written during this time were generally about as realistic as modern genre fiction — some were more heavily fantastical in nature than others. Modern idea of genre fiction also developed during this time period.

Examples of Victorian era authors include: Charles Dickens, Alfred Tennyson, Robert Louis Stevenson, Jules Verne, George Eliot, the Brontës, Thomas Hardy, W.B. Yeats, William Thackeray, H.G. Wells, A.C. Doyle, Thoreau, Elizabeth Gaskell, Anthony Trollope, Anna Sewell, Rudyard Kipling, and Lewis Carroll.

This time is part of the 19th Century.

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Madame Bovary

Victorian Era

It’s an example of literary realism that is widely considered one of the most influential novels in literary history. It’s been adapted many times both for stage and for screen as well as being admired both by Henry James and Marcel Proust. Though it was his debut novel, it’s also considered Flaubert’s magnum opus. This is a review of Madame Bovary.

Japanese Ghost Stories

Victorian Era

Why do I like ghost stories? I like them because I like to hear stories. I like to suspend my disbelief for that instant why I wonder if they could happen. I like them because I like to read stories about a version of reality that is just a bit off-kilter and unexplained. This is a review of Lafcadio Hearn’s Japanese Ghost Stories.

Jude the Obscure

Victorian Era

This book got mixed reviews when it was published, one going so far as to call it ‘obscene’. What was obscene about it was the discussion of themes and aspects of Victorian life that Victorians were in no way comfortable discussing — including the struggles of the lower classes and their exclusion from even the dream of higher education, the lack of class mobility, sex, sexism, animal cruelty, the destructive power of gossip, bad marriages, and horrible people. This is a review of Thomas Hardy’s Jude the Obscure.