Journal Article

The Pockets of Henry Fielding’s Writing

Lucy Razzall

in The Cambridge Quarterly

Published on behalf of Cambridge Quarterly

Volume 35, issue 4, pages 361-377
Published in print October 2006 | ISSN: 0008-199X
Published online October 2006 | e-ISSN: 1471-6836 | DOI:
The Pockets of Henry Fielding’s Writing

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Expanding upon recent trends to view material objects as valuable sources in literary criticism, the author employs the pocket as the model for Fielding’s narrative mechanisms. The essay argues that as systems of containment and sites of friction (and as both text and textile) the pockets of the criminal underworld in Jonathan Wild provide microcosmic templates for Fielding’s characteristic concealments and revelations. Exploring the openings and closings of different eighteenthcentury pockets, such as those of women and of the conjuror, the author concludes that the concerns of authority, secrecy, and visibility embodied in and by the pocket epitomise the moral and ethical concerns of Fielding’s language itself.

Journal Article.  7680 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Art ; Film ; Music

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