Category Archives: Literature

Victorian revival

From the following Start the Week podcast with its key theme being things related to a Victorian revival, there were a number of pointed notes related to stories, communication, and generally the fundamental differences between different times and ages of development.
Firstly, the topic of books whose narrative and colour is based on other literature from the era, as opposed to history. A certain style, mood, and perception begets itself, reinforces an image that is quickly popularised, and leaves aside some of the grimy and non-linear details inherent in the process of history itself. The story of history rarely proceeds in a straight, logical line, apart from when it is recounted in hindsight.
Secondly, the idea of authors wishing to “complete” the stories of characters from the Victorian era is one that struck me. It seems to have at its core the gaps and differences in how communication, diaries, self-description and -documentation are changing how our lives and our world are interpreted (and made interpretable). The reference to Erving Goffman cross-references nicely with a Thinking Allowed podcast of some time ago: all about how people are always putting on a show, how they present themselves, and which media they choose in which, and with which, to do so.