Introduction: the Lady Audley Paradigm

Saverio Tomaiuolo

in In Lady Audley's Shadow

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780748641154
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651665 | DOI:
Introduction: the Lady Audley Paradigm

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This introductory chapter discusses the ‘sensational novel’, was one of the most complicated and vague literary phenomena from the mid-to-late nineteenth century, beginning with a brief account of the works of Lady Rosina Wheeler, who was involved in the ‘Hertford scandal’. Margaret Oliphant was a female writer who coined the phrase ‘fair-haired demon’, but it is Mary Elizabeth Braddon who is widely considered as the most prolific, controversial, and talented writer about the role of women in the Victorian family. The rest of the chapter examines her novel, Lady Audley’s Secret, and the influence the ‘Hertford scandal’ had on her writing.

Keywords: sensational novel; Mary Elizabeth Braddon; Lady Audley’s Secret; Hertford scandal; fair-haired demon; role of women; Victorian family

Chapter.  8984 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

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