Science, System, and the Sexual Body: The Ordeal of Richard Feverel

Shuttleworth Sally

in The Mind of the Child

Published in print July 2010 | ISBN: 9780199582563
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191702327 | DOI:
Science, System, and the Sexual Body: The Ordeal of Richard Feverel

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This chapter examines George Meredith's novel The Ordeal of Richard Feverel and its relevance to discourses concerning sexuality and fears of precocious development in childhood in England during the 19th century. The chapter explores the similarity of this novel with Charles Dickens' Dombey and Son in the way that it explores interconnections between mid-Victorian material and scientific culture and conceptions of child development. Both novels are concerned with the ways in which an egotistical father seeks to mould his son during childhood.

Keywords: George Meredith; The Ordeal of Richard Feverel; sexuality; child development; England; Charles Dickens; Dombey and Son; scientific culture; egotistical father

Chapter.  12538 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

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