The Crisis of Courtesy: Studies in the Conduct-Book in Britain, 1600-1900
BRILL, 1994 - Literary Criticism - 201 pages
The Crisis of Courtesy examines the apparent decline of the courtesy-book in Britain after the 16th century and suggests that the matter of courtesy was disseminated into a broad range of literary genres such as poetry, the essay and the novel.
The authors highlight the pervasive interest in conduct evinced in Georgian and Victorian literature. They show how it became an important source of inspiration for middle-class writers and artists who were eager to help their readers adapt to a changing society, but preferred to write in a humorous, satirical or imaginative vein rather than in a prescriptive manner. The book will be useful to the literary historian, as some major Augustan works such as those of Swift, Fielding and Hogarth are analysed from a new perspective.
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Note on contributors
List of illustrations 202
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