Evelina | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 38 pages of analysis & critique of Evelina.
This section contains 10,229 words
(approx. 35 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Timothy Dykstal

SOURCE: “Evelina and the Culture Industry,” in Criticism, Vol. XXXVII, No. 4, Fall, 1995, pp. 559-81.

In the following essay, Dykstal's reading of Evelina is informed by Jürgen Habermas's analysis of the role of the bourgeoisie in early capitalist Europe. According to Dykstal, Evelina presents Burney's hope that the fictional culture she presented would encourage independence and cultural literacy, both of which are necessary in Habermas's view for the bourgeoisie to challenge the dominance of the aristocracy.

In an early scene from Volume III of Frances Burney's Evelina (1778), Mrs. Selwyn, the experienced, independent “lady of large fortune” who acts as Evelina's guardian after her arrival in the resort community of Bristol Hotwell, reproaches Lord Merton, a dissolute aristocrat, for making a play for her charge.1 After “listen[ing] in silent contempt” to his flirtatious banter with Evelina, Mrs. Selwyn tells Merton that “his Lordship's rank and interest will secure...

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This section contains 10,229 words
(approx. 35 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Timothy Dykstal
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Critical Essay by Timothy Dykstal from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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