Download Philanthropy in British and American Fiction: Dickens, by Frank Christianson PDF

By Frank Christianson

In the course of the nineteenth century the U.S. and Britain got here to percentage an monetary profile exceptional of their respective histories. This publication means that this early excessive capitalism got here to function the floor for a brand new form of cosmopolitanism within the age of literary realism, and argues for the need of a transnational research established upon monetary relationships of which individuals on either side of the Atlantic have been more and more wakeful. The nexus of this exploration of economics, aesthetics and ethical philosophy is philanthropy. Pushing past reductive debates over the benevolent or mercenary characteristics of commercial period philanthropy, the subsequent questions are addressed: what shape and serve as does philanthropy suppose in British and American fiction respectively? What are the rhetorical elements of a discourse of philanthropy and within which cultural domain names did it function? How used to be philanthropy practiced and represented in a interval marked by way of self-interest and rational calculation? the writer explores the connection among philanthropy and literary realism in novels through Charles Dickens, Nathaniel Hawthorne, George Eliot, and William Dean Howells, and examines how each one used the determine of philanthropy either to redefine the emotions that knowledgeable social id and to refashion their very own aesthetic practices.

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Additional resources for Philanthropy in British and American Fiction: Dickens, Hawthorne, Eliot and Howells (Edinburgh Studies in Transatlantic Literatures)

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At the same time, Howells is working out his own aesthetic programme within and against the values he attributes to Dickens, Hawthorne, and Eliot. qxd 22 ] 18/10/07 9:34 am Page 22 Phil's G4 Phil's G4:Users:phil:Public Philanthropy in British and American Fiction efforts of American economists to transform what they saw as the fatalism of earlier British economists. Howells’s work shores up this faith in the American economic system, as he turns to altruism as the means of mitigating the adverse effects of what he terms the ‘chance’ economy.

Stewart would later play a key role in transmitting and repackaging Smith’s ideas for a wider public. His Lectures on Political Economy (1855), delivered between 1800 and 1810 while he was serving as chair of moral philosophy at the University of Edinburgh, reached a wide and cosmopolitan body of students, some of whom went on to promote his ideas in the pages of the Edinburgh Review. 42 One of the consequences of Smith’s ambiguity is that it allowed revisionists in the century that followed to instantiate these polarities in response to disciplinary imperatives.

William Greg, ‘Political Economy’ (1865)2 Nineteenth-century philanthropic discourse takes shape among the contexts of political, social, and religious reform, economic thought, and the arts. My purpose in this chapter is to provide a historical and interpretive context for certain key terms within that discourse. The lexical history of three of these terms – sympathy, philanthropy, and altruism – ties them as part of a narrative of cultural transformation with specific implications for the dominant aesthetic regimes of the period.

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