Victorian Vulgarity: Taste in Verbal and Visual Culture
Susan David Bernstein, Elsie Browning Michie
Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2009 - History - 259 pages
Originally describing language use and class position, vulgarity became, over the course of the nineteenth century, a word with wider social implications. Variously associated with behavior, the possession of wealth, different races, sexuality and gender, the objects displayed in homes, and ways of thinking and feeling, vulgarity suggested matters of style, taste, and comportment. This collection examines the diverse ramifications of vulgarity in the four areas where it was most discussed in the nineteenth century: language use, changing social spaces, the emerging middle classes, and visual art. Exploring the dynamics of the term as revealed in dictionaries and grammars; Mayhew's London Labour and the London Poor; fiction by Dickens, Eliot, Gissing, and Trollope; essays, journalism, art, and art reviews, the contributors bring their formidable analytical skills to bear on this enticing and divisive concept. Taken together, these essays urge readers to consider the implications of vulgarity's troubled history for today's writers, critics, and artists.
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Introduction Varieties of Vulgarity
Social Mobility MiddleClass Diction
On Making a Spectacle of Oneself in Pickwick
WorkingClass Politics in London
George Gissing and
Too Common Readers at the British Museum
Jewish Materialism and Spiritual
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aesthetic Amy Levy Anthony Trollope argues artist Ayala Ayala's Angel British Museum Cambridge Carlyle century character Children cinema common critical Crosbie culture David Bernstein depicted described desire Dickens disgust display distinction domestic Dorian Gray Dormer dress Eliot English essay ethical fashion female fiction Gender George George Eliot George Gissing Ghetto Gissing Gissing's Grub Street Havell Henry ideal Israel Zangwill James Jewish Jews Jingle Lady language liberal Lily Lily Dale literary London Labour Lydgate marriage material Mayhew middle-class Middlemarch modern nabobs narrative narrator nineteenth nineteenth-century Oxford painting Pickwick Pickwick Papers Picture of Dorian political portrait public space readers Reading Room refinement Reuben Sachs Review Ruskin sexual slang Small House social society spiritual Stubbs suggests Swadeshi taste Tissot's traditional Tringle Trollope Trollope's novel University Press urban Valman vicar Victorian Literature Victorian Vulgarity vulgarity Wilde's woman women words worldliness writing Wuthering Heights York Zangwill Zangwill's