Evelina | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 28 pages of analysis & critique of Evelina.
This section contains 7,612 words
(approx. 26 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Susan Staves

SOURCE: “Evelina; or, Female Difficulties,” in Modern Philology, Vol. 73, No. 4, May, 1976, pp. 368-81.

In the following essay, Staves challenges those critics who find Evelina trivial and asserts that the anxiety felt by the main characters is quite real and is often induced by violence.

There is a remarkable degree of critical consensus on the merits of Evelina, Fanny Burney's popular novel.1 This consensus is for the most part sound, but it has one aspect which strikes me as peculiar. Descriptions of the novel make it appear to be a combination of the usual romance with cheerful, albeit occasionally malicious, satire. The primary criticism of the book is that it is hopelessly trivial. Yet Evelina's predominant emotion seems to me to be an acute anxiety which is painful, real, and powerful.

Traditional approaches to Evelina stress Fanny Burney's place in literary history as a transitional figure between the major...

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This section contains 7,612 words
(approx. 26 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Susan Staves
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Critical Essay by Susan Staves from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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