Victorians and Their Animals: Beast on a Leash

1st Edition

Brenda Ayres

Published December 4, 2018
Reference - 212 Pages
ISBN 9781138359567 - CAT# K397106
Series: Perspectives on the Non-Human in Literature and Culture

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Victorians and Their Animals: Beast on a Leash investigates the notion that British Victorians did see themselves as a naturally dominant species over other humans and over animals. They were conscientiously, hegemonically determined to rule those beneath them and the animal within themselves, albeit with varying degrees of success and failure. The articles in this collection apply posthumanism and other theories, including queer, postcolonialist, deconstructionist, and Marxist approaches in their exploration of Victorian attitudes toward animals. They study the biopolitical relationships between human and nonhuman animals in several key Victorian literary works. Some of this book’s chapters deal with animal ethics and moral aesthetics. Also being studied is the representation of animals in several Victorian novels as narrative devices to signify class status and gender dynamics, either to iterate socially acceptable mores, to satirize hypocrisy or breach of behavior or to voice social protest. All of the chapters analyze the interdependence of people and animals during the nineteenth century.

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