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book Reviews Dovetailing with this, Michael Davis's contribution challenges Foucault's dominant narrative that alleges homosexuality was the creation of the psycho-medical establishment and homosexuals merely mouthed the diagnoses heaped upon them. Against this, Davis asserts that Pater's diaphanous type actively cultivated a space in which to describe those who remain outside cultural norms. In this sense, Pater chooses Winckelmann as his "queer daddy" because Winckelmann's legacy afforded Pater a model that allowed him to contend with conflicting desires. In short, the tactile quality of Winckelmann's interpretations of Greek sculpture, along with his own "fervent friendships with young men," opened up the possibility of inhabiting a queered space between thought and sensation. Therefore, it is not regulatory apparatuses per se, but, rather, "queer people themselves [i.e. Winckelmann and Pater] that classified and theorized the homosexual." Walter Pater: Transparencies of Desire provides Pater enthusiasts with the adept insight of over twenty scholars. While a review's brevity fails to do justice to all these contributors, it is clear that this collection makes us all indebted to this still oft-neglected Victorian aesthete, for the collection's sheer breadth alone is ample testimony to the fecundity of Pater studies. james M. Goodwin Pennsylvania State University George Gissing Simon J. James. Unsettled Accounts: Money and Narrative in the Novels of George Gissing. London: Anthem Press, 2003. 192 pp. Paper £16.95 $22.50 IN 1894 George Gissing wrote to Clara Collet, "I am never quite at ease save in dealing with forms of life where there enters pecuniary struggle." Offering a wide-ranging account of the ways in which pecuniary struggle underpins the developing aesthetic vision of a key fin-de-siècle novelist, this theoretically informed new study of Gissing's fiction will be welcomed for its fresh insights into the presence of money and "the universalising hold of commodity relations on modern social life" in late-Victorian culture. It follows recent trends in Gissing scholarship in focusing on the author as a London novelist with an acute awareness of the vulgarities and commercialism of his age, but goes beyond the biographical tendencies of an earlier generation of Marxist critics to situate his work in relation to wider Victorian debates and concerns about the City, the consumer economy, the New Woman, speculation, business and imperialism. Discussions of labour and capitalism are in97 ELT 48 : 1 2005 formed by the economic and philosophical ideas of nineteenth-century commentators such as Arthur Schopenhauer, Thomas Carlyle, John Stuart Mill and Marx himself, as well as responsive to recent debates in Marxism. Representations of the city, the working classes and the growth of suburbia are further opened up by reference to nonfictional writing, such as Routledge's Jubilee Guide to London and its Suburbs (1887) and Herbert Fry's London in 1880: Illustrated with Bird's-Eye Views of the Principal Streets; also its Chief Suburbs and Environs (1880). Whilst this is a well-written and lucid account, it does sometimes appear lacking on issues of methodology, which are confined to a rather rushed final paragraph of the introduction. Neither does James make a concerted effort to situate the project in relation to the development of Gissing criticism. A little more signposting here and there, and a more obvious conclusion, might have helped to clarify the ways in which a focus on money and commodity relations advances our understanding of an undervalued Victorian novelist. As earlier critics have established, Victorian plots are typically mobilised around inheritances, debts, reversals of fortune, and expectations of wealth where the redistribution of money amongst characters produces changes in social position and cash prizes often function as rewards for good behaviour. James's original analysis of the relationship between money and narrative centres on the argument that the function of money as "a source of cultural anxiety" for Gissing cannot be separated from his subversive disruptions of the Victorian plot, an argument anchored in a wider analysis of the uses of realism in fin-de-siècle fiction. The starting point for analysis is John Goode's important identification of Dickens as the major point of reference for Gissing, against whom he was to define...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1559-2715
Print ISSN
0013-8339
Pages
pp. 97-100
Launched on MUSE
2010-05-21
Open Access
No
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