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Comparative Literature Commons

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2003

Marshall University

Articles 1 - 1 of 1

Full-Text Articles in Comparative Literature

Chasing Demons: Female Villains And Narrative Strategy In Victorian Sensation Fiction, Heather Sowards Jan 2003

Chasing Demons: Female Villains And Narrative Strategy In Victorian Sensation Fiction, Heather Sowards

Theses, Dissertations and Capstones

This thesis explores Victorian sensation fiction and key authors who rely on essentialism, employing the classifications of either angel or demon to their literary female figures. Using Nina Auerbach's theories on these above categorizations and Helene Cixous's linguistic binaries, I examine the ways in which the narrators of Mary Elizabeth Braddon's Lady Audley's Secret, Sheridan Le Fanu's Uncle Silas, and Wilkie Collins's Heart and Science force this taxonomy onto the female villains who dominate the novels' themes. By looking closely at the narrative strategies, I conclude that these female characters themselves are proposing a ...