A critical study of the work of Juliana Horatia Ewing 1841-1885

Bailey, Diana Vera


Bailey, Diana Vera (1980) A critical study of the work of Juliana Horatia Ewing 1841-1885.

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This critical study of Juliana Ewing traces her development and examines the considerable range of her prose and verse. As a talented and imaginative, though uneven, writer, experimenting with diverse forms and techniques, she helped to shape and extend children's fiction in the second half of the nineteenth century.

The introduction indicates the unpublished and published materials for such an undertaking, gives a brief account of the critical reception of her work arid provides a selective biography describing the social and intellectual climate in which her work grew, and her formative relationship with her mother, the writer Margaret Gatty. Her juvenilia and her apprentice work in the sixties show her restless experimentation with the inherited models of children's fiction and with some of the dated, threadbare types of adult fiction. Only gradually and through her knowledge of the greatest contemporary novelists did she evolve more personal forms, adapted to young readers, but with no sacrifice of honesty or subtlety.

In the short story, her earliest successes were dream fantasies that transformed the older didactic magic into more expansive psychological accounts. Subsequently, she consciously recreated the spare style, fundamental situations and wayward magic of folk tradition in her imitative tales, and she reworked versions of the legend and parable, making an intelligent contribution to the age's rediscovery of fairy tale. Her particular achievement in domestic fiction was her development in the seventies and eighties of a nouvelle structure and of controlling images as principles of organisation. The resulting form, taut and rich, avoided the problems of her five novels of education which lay in reconciling her intense and accurate recreations of children's experience with the novel's demand for some terminus of maturity.

Tales, nouvelles and novels present a combination of formal artistry with sympathetic penetration of children's lives that is distinctive in juvenile literature of this date.

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Item TypeThesis (Doctoral)
TitleA critical study of the work of Juliana Horatia Ewing 1841-1885
AuthorsBailey, Diana Vera
Uncontrolled KeywordsEnglish Literature; Language, Literature And Linguistics; 1841; 1885; A; Critical; Ewing; Ewing, Juliana Horatia; Ewing, Juliana Horatia; Horatia; Juliana; Study; Work



Deposited by () on 31-Jan-2017 in Royal Holloway Research Online.Last modified on 31-Jan-2017


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