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The reception of the fiction of Eugene Sue in Britain 1838-1860

Chevasco, Berry Palmer; (2000) The reception of the fiction of Eugene Sue in Britain 1838-1860. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This thesis examines the reception of the novels of the French author Eugene Sue in Britain from 1838-1860, with the aim of furthering the understanding of the intellectual and cultural dialogue between France and Britain and the effect of that dialogue on British fiction during the Victorian period. Sue's novels were widely read throughout the western world during the 1840s, especially amongst the newly literate of the poor and working classes. His success with these new readers helped to feed the controversies of the period surrounding the influence of fiction on public morality. The study of Sue's reception in Britain during that time offers insight into those controversies as well as adding to the awareness of the concerns of an important period in the history of English literature. Because of his widespread success, Sue's effect on the popular fiction and culture of the period is easily recognized. This study explores the more problematic relationship of Sue's fiction with contemporary British works which now form part of the established canon of English literature. The thesis begins with a brief description of Sue's life and works and his reception in France during his career. Thereafter it focuses on the reception of Sue's fiction in Britain during the same period, including the critical response in the British press to his novels and to dramatic adaptations associated with his Les Mystères de Paris, the relationship of that novel with G.W.M. Reynolds's Mysteries of London, and other commentary by key literary figures. Particular attention is paid to the relationship Sue's novels bear with some of the British works of the time, notably those of Dickens. It is hoped that this study will advance the appreciation of a nineteenth-century author whose works were significant to his time but whose importance has been largely ignored since.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: The reception of the fiction of Eugene Sue in Britain 1838-1860
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Language, literature and linguistics; Sue, Eugene
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10111002
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