Excerpt from Household Words, Vol. 7: August, 1853 Old Martin did not like any joking upon the subject of his smuggling stories. He shook his head, and merely said, Wait till next time. Then, to put an end to the conversation, he drew out his Spy-glass and began to observe what the men were doing in the Jenny - a kind of barge, in which lived two look-out men, and which always stood, high and dry, on a part of the beach. But, said I (for I would not let him off so cheaply), they tell me the last man was just such a bumpkin as that fellow you caught this morning. About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Find more at www.forgottenbooks.com This book is a reproduction of an important historical work. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art technology to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. In rare cases, an imperfection in the original, such as a blemish or missing page, may be replicated in our edition. We do, however, repair the vast majority of imperfections successfully; any imperfections that remain are intentionally left to preserve the state of such historical works.
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Discourses of Class, Race and Colonialism in the Works of Charles Dickens
Author: Grace Moore
Category: Literary Criticism
Dickens and Empire offers a reevaluation of Charles Dickens's imaginative engagement with the British Empire throughout his career. Employing postcolonial theory alongside readings of Dickens's novels, journalism and personal correspondence, it explores his engagement with Britain's imperial holdings as imaginative spaces onto which he offloaded a number of pressing domestic and personal problems, thus creating an entangled discourse between race and class. Drawing upon a wealth of primary material, it offers a radical reassessment of the writer's stance on racial matters. In the past Dickens has been dismissed as a dogged and sustained racist from the 1850s until the end of his life; but here author Grace Moore reappraises The Noble Savage, previously regarded as a racist tract. Examining it side by side with a series of articles by Lord Denman in The Chronicle, which condemned the staunch abolitionist Dickens as a supporter of slavery, Moore reveals that the tract is actually an ironical riposte. This finding facilitates a review and reassessment of Dickens's controversial outbursts during the Sepoy Rebellion of 1857, and demonstrates that his views on racial matters were a good deal more complex than previous critics have suggested. Moore's analysis of a number of pre- and post-Mutiny articles calling for reform in India shows that Dickens, as their publisher, would at least have been aware of the grievances of the Indian people, and his journal's sympathy toward them is at odds with his vitriolic responses to the insurrection. This first sustained analysis of Dickens and his often problematic relationship to the British Empire provides fresh readings of a number of Dickens texts, in particular A Tale of Two Cities. The work also presents a more complicated but balanced view of one of the most famous figures in Victorian literature.
Charles Dickens was in his own day the most popular novelist who had ever lived, a public figure adored like a present-day pop star. He still holds his place as one of the greatest English writers, an original genius whose novels are an essential link in the canon of English literature. He was also actively involved in the life of his time, campaigning for social and educational reform and sharply critical of contemporary society. This short biography provides an excellent introduction to Dickens, from his disturbed childhood with a traumatic period working in a blacking factory, his instant success as a young writer and his tumultuous acclaim in both England and America, the major novels of the 1850s and '60s and the establishment of Household Words, to the final years as a public performer of his own work.
The British have long boasted of their tradition of asylum for political refugees, but never with more justification than in the nineteenth century, when the legal toleration which was accorded them in Britain was nearly absolute. Not only were fugitives of all political complexions allowed into Britain, but there was for most of the century no possible way - no law on the statute book - by which they could be kept out. This, and the licence which was allowed them to agitate and conspire were greatly resented by the governments from which they had fled, and regretted only a little less by many British ministers, who sometimes found it necessary to take measures against them which were of dubious constitutional legality, and who wished, and once tried, to amend the law in order to enable them to do more. That effort, arising from Orsini's bomb plot in January 1858, resulted in the fall of the government which proposed it, and the loss by its successor of a famous state prosecution: a failure which, as this book argues, was crucial for the maintenance of the practice of toleration thereafter.