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Romance's Rival – Familiar Marriage in Victorian Fiction - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Romance's Rival: Familiar Marriage in Victorian Fiction

Talia Schaffer


The book argues that the central plot of the most important genre of the nineteenth century, the marriage plot novel, means something quite different from what we have assumed. In Victorian novels, women may marry for erotic desire—but they may, instead, insist on marrying trustworthy companions who can offer them socially rich lives and futures of meaningful work. It recovers “familiar marriage,” connecting it to the development of female subjectivity since the seventeenth century. A major rereading of the rise-of-the-novel tradition, from Richardson through the twentieth century, rethinks wh ... More

Keywords: marriage, romance, novel, Victorian, Jane Austen, George Eliot, Charlotte Yonge, Anthony Trollope

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780190465094
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2016 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190465094.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Talia Schaffer, author
Professor of English, Queens College and Graduate Center, City University of New York