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Through the Northern Gate

Childhood and Growing Up in British Fiction, 1719-1901


Jacqueline Banerjee

This study challenges critical orthodoxy by showing that childhood became a focus of interest in British fiction well before the Romantic period. It also argues that children in the Victorian novel, far from being sentimental figures, are psychologically unique and contribute positively and significantly to the narrative discourse. Contemporary ideology, the novelists' autobiographical and humanitarian impulses, and gender issues, are all examined as factors in this development. Works by the major authors are analysed alongside others by non-canonical and children's writers.


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List of Illustrations xiii


List of Illustrations 1. "So, Charley, I hear you have been to a juvenile party?" (from Punch, March 29, 1856} 75 2. Robinson Crusoe and Man Friday, by George Cruikshank (from Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, John Major edition, 1831} 76 3. "Homage to Hans Christian Andersen" (from Punch,January 10, 1857) 77 4. Betsinda dancing in her rags, by William Make- peace Thackeray (from Thackeray's The Rose and the Ring, Harper edition, 1903} 78 5. "Little Christine," by the Brothers Dalziel (from Hans Christian Andersen's Stories for the Household, Routledge edition, 1866} 78 6. "Chacun Pour Soi" (from Punch, May 15, 1875) 79 7. "Honest Sympathy" (from Punch, February 22, 1873) 80 8. "A Whispered Appeal" (from Punch, March 6, 1875) 81 9. "The Long-Cherished Desire of a Lifetime!" (from Punch, May 3, 1873} 141 10. 'Countess Kate,' by Gwen Raverat (from Charlotte Yonge's Countess Kate, Faber edition, 1948} 142 11. "Gracious Heaven! you are not going to speak to those creatures, Miss Brotherton?" (from Frances Trollope's Michael Armstrong, Factory Boy, Henry Colburn edition, 1840} 143 12. "Lead on, Bohemian bold"-the gypsy-boy Reginald Bassett (from Charles Reade's A Terrible Tempta- tion, Library edition, 1871} 144 13. "Arthur, Tom and East were together one night" (from Thomas Hughes's Tom Brown's Schooldays, Dent edition, 1906} 145 xiv List of Illustrations 14. "Oliver plucks up a spirit," by George Cruikshank (from Dickens's Oliver Twist, Chapman and Hall edition, 1892) 146 15. "By the Sad Sea Waves" (from Punch, December 25, 1869)...

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