Literary Precedents for Shirley

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The historical novel has a long and lofty heritage in English literature, with Sir Walter Scott at its peak. Bronte is, thus, part of an old tradition. What might be called semi-historical novels, the genre known as "condition of England" works, were well represented in the nineteenth century (largely as a response to the increased industrialization of the nation).

Examples include Disraeli's Sybil (1845), Mrs. Gaskell's Mary Barton (1848) and North and South (1854-55), Dickens's Hard Times (]1854), and Charles Kingsley's Alton Locke ('1850). Charlotte Bronte had, perhaps beyond her intention, placed herself in distinguished company.

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This section contains 96 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Buy the Shirley Short Guide
Copyrights
Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults
Shirley from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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