discovery of the “great resources of energy and will within himself” that were so essential to his art.9 Dickens, the artist, was also Dickens the mesmerist. He first practised mesmerism on his wife Catherine in Pittsburgh in 1842 ...
Author: Martin Willis
Category: Literary Criticism
Victorian Literary Mesmerism offers eleven interdisciplinary essays on the intersections between mesmerism and nineteenth-century literature. Its scope is complex and ambitious: ranging from considerations of the impact of literature on quasi-scientific writings of the early 1800s, to a study of Arthur Conan Doyle's use of ‘magnetic' ideas at the fin de siècle . The collection boldly leaps across generic, disciplinary, and cultural boundaries; essays on George Eliot and Elizabeth Gaskell sit snugly besides studies of Edgar Allan Poe and Wilkie Collins. Medicine, the law, spiritualism, physics, and literature are all discussed in light of their respective impact on Australian, British, and American history.
Dickens is seated upon a raised plinth with a figure of Little Nell at his feet. ... AX Matz, B. W., 'Memorials and Tablets to Dickens', Dickensian, 11 (1915). mesmerism, an early type of hypnotism, named after its formulator Franz ...
MESMERISM 735 a positive adoption of mesmeric motifs and metaphors for the implicit poetology of the text , for its ... MARGARETE KOHLENBACH See also Arnim , Achim von ; Balzac , Honoré de ; Coleridge , Samuel Taylor ; Dickens , Charles ...
Author: Christopher John Murray
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Explores the developments that influenced the profound changes in thought and sensibility during the second half of the eighteenth century and the first half of the nineteenth century.
Dickens firstmetTownshendwhenthetwodinedtogetheratJohnElliotson'shomein1840, bonding over their shared interest in mesmerism.1 Townshend, after all, offered a theoryofmesmerismthataccordedwithDickens'sownpsychologicalviews;Dick- ens ...
Author: Tyson Stolte
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Category: Narration (Rhetoric)
Dickens and Victorian Psychology: Introspection, First-Person Narration, and the Mind positions Charles Dickens's fiction in the midst of Victorian psychological debate, tracking Dickens's increasing reliance over the course of his career on the introspective mode, those moments--from free indirect discourse to first-person narration--in which Dickens attempts to represent the inner view of his characters' minds. In the middle of the nineteenth century, introspection remained the central investigative method for dualist psychologies, theories that tied the mind's immortality to its immateriality. Because those psychologies found evidence of the mind's ontological difference from the body in the subjective experience of consciousness, this book argues that the moments of inwardness in Dickens's fiction, in both their form and their content, constitute efforts to resist the encroachment of psycho-physiology by making a case for the mind's transcendence of the body. Yet Dickens and Victorian Psychology also shows the consequences of a material psychology's appropriation of such an inward view--as well as the results of the efforts by psycho-physiologists to redefine the terminology of a mainstream dualism--by tracing the ambiguities and contradictions that find their way into Dickens's representations of the mind. In these ways, this book reveals an overlooked context for Dickens's experiments with narrative point of view and broadens our understanding of the strategies that a material psychology used to assuage the anxieties of those who saw psycho-physiology as a threat to immortality.
Author: Rosemarie BodenheimerPublish On: 2012-11-09
John Bowen invokes George Henry Lewes and George Eliot as critics of Dickens's failure to write psychologically or ... J. B. Bullen (London: Longman, 1997), 137–79; Fred Kaplan, Dickens and Mesmerism: The Hidden Springs ofFiction ...
Author: Rosemarie Bodenheimer
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Category: Literary Criticism
"A revealing and concealing intelligence lurks somewhere—but where, exactly?—in Dickens's writing. To capture something of that knowing Dickens who eludes us, I follow some representative clusters of thought and feeling that link Dickens's ways of talking in letters with his concerns in fiction and journalism. What are the internal plots this writer carried around throughout his life, his characteristic patterns of experience, response, and counterresponse? What shapes recur in the various forms of writing and acting that make up this life?"—from Knowing Dickens In this compelling and accessible book Rosemarie Bodenheimer explores the thoughtworld of the Victorian novelist who was most deeply intrigued by nineteenth-century ideas about the unconscious mind. Dickens found many ways to dramatize in his characters both unconscious processes and acts of self-projection—notions that are sometimes applied to him as if he were an unwitting patient. Bodenheimer explains how the novelist used such techniques to negotiate the ground between knowing and telling, revealing and concealing. She asks how well Dickens knew himself—the extent to which he understood his own nature and the ways he projected himself in his fictions—and how well we can know him. Knowing Dickens is the first book to systematically explore Dickens's abundant correspondence in relation to his published writings. Gathering evidence from letters, journalistic essays, stories, and novels that bear on a major issue or pattern of response in Dickens's life and work, Bodenheimer cuts across familiar storylines in Dickens biography and criticism in chapters that take up topics including self-defensive language, models of memory, relations of identification and rivalry among men, houses and household management, and walking and writing.
For an account of mesmerism in general, see Adam Crabtree, From Mesmer to Freud: Magnetic Sleep and the Roots of Psychological Healing (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1993); for the classic study of Dickens and mesmerism, ...
Author: Anny Sadrin
The essays collected in this volume offer fresh readings of Dickens's travelogues and novels, often pointing to the many-sidedness of his personality. The 'uncommercial traveller' emerges as an ecumenical John Bull, chary of the alien but greedy of novelty, a man whose incursions on well-trodden or unfamiliar ground are always journeys into the uncanny. Besides dealing with the geography of the novelist's imagination, the book explores numerous 'new worlds' such as the inspiring world of Victorian science and Dickens's responses to it or the world of modern literary theory that shapes our own responses to his work.
His interest in mesmerism is perhaps most widely known, in large part due to Fred Kaplan's Dickens and Mesmerism.16 Not only did Dickens read widely on the subject, Kaplan has shown, but he even prided himself on his abilities as a ...
Author: Robert L. Patten
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Category: Literary Collections
The Oxford Handbook of Charles Dickens is a comprehensive and up-to-date collection on Dickens's life and works. It includes original chapters on all of Dickens's writing and new considerations of his contexts, from the social, political, and economic to the scientific, commercial, and religious. The contributions speak in new ways about his depictions of families, environmental degradation, and improvements of the industrial age, as well as the law, charity, and communications. His treatment of gender, his mastery of prose in all its varieties and genres, and his range of affects and dramatization all come under stimulating reconsideration. His understanding of British history, of empire and colonization, of his own nation and foreign ones, and of selfhood and otherness, like all the other topics, is explained in terms easy to comprehend and profoundly relevant to global modernity.
These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions.
Author: Fred Kaplan
Publisher: Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press
Drawing on fresh source material, Fred Kaplan considers the importance From Dickens and Mesmerism of Dickens' involvement with mesmerism for his work and his personality. In so doing he describes a significant intellectual and spiritual movement and provides new and controversial insights into Dickens' fiction. The mesmeric movement in England, particularly its controversial activities during the late 1830s and the 1840s, intensified Dickens' concern with the ways in which people discover and exert their energies and will to control each other. Dickens' own activities as a mesmerist provide the biographical touchstone for his image of himself as a doctor of the mind. Fred Kaplan examines the author's entire oeuvre in a synoptic, thematic fashion, exploring the attitudes shaped by the mesmerists that are reflected in the novels' psychological tensions. The final chapter provides an overview of the Romantic, Victorian, and Modern currents that may be found in Dickens' fascination with mesmeric power. Originally published in 1975. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.
Fred Kaplan briefly discusses this episode in Dickens and Mesmerism (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1975), 83–84, a detailed study of Dickens's fascination with the phenomenon, his literary use of it, and its place in Victorian ...
Author: Lillian Nayder
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Catherine Hogarth, who came from a cultured Scots family, married Charles Dickens in 1836, the same year he began serializing his first novel. Together they traveled widely, entertained frequently, and raised ten children. In 1858, the celebrated writer pressured Catherine to leave their home, unjustly alleging that she was mentally disordered-unfit and unloved as wife and mother. Constructing a plotline nearly as powerful as his stories of Scrooge and Little Nell, Dickens created the image of his wife as a depressed and uninteresting figure, using two of her three sisters against her, by measuring her presumed weaknesses against their strengths. This self-serving fiction is still widely accepted. In the first comprehensive biography of Catherine Dickens, Lillian Nayder debunks this tale in retelling it, wresting away from the famous novelist the power to shape his wife's story. Nayder demonstrates that the Dickenses' marriage was long a happy one; more important, she shows that the figure we know only as "Mrs. Charles Dickens" was also a daughter, sister, and friend, a loving mother and grandmother, a capable household manager, and an intelligent person whose company was valued and sought by a wide circle of women and men. Making use of the Dickenses' banking records and legal papers as well as their correspondence with friends and family members, Nayder challenges the long-standing view of Catherine Dickens and offers unparalleled insights into the relations among the four Hogarth sisters, reclaiming those cherished by the famous novelist as Catherine's own and illuminating her special bond with her youngest sister, Helen, her staunchest ally during the marital breakdown. Drawing on little-known, unpublished material and forcing Catherine's husband from center stage, The Other Dickens revolutionizes our perception of the Dickens family dynamic, illuminates the legal and emotional ambiguities of Catherine's position as a "single" wife, and deepens our understanding of what it meant to be a woman in the Victorian age.
the mesmerist's manipulation and to give more 'neutral' evidence than adults, who would bring their own, more refined sense of identity to the mesmerist investigation. Lecturing at the London Mechanics' Institution in Chancery Lane in ...
Author: K. Boehm
Category: Literary Criticism
This book takes a fresh look at childhood in Dickens' works and in Victorian science and culture more generally. It offers a new way of understanding Dickens' interest in childhood by showing how his fascination with new scientific ideas about childhood and practices of scientific inquiry shaped his narrative techniques and aesthetic imagination.