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Revie the Britishness of the "turn-of-the-twentieth-century" debates she has unearthed. However, that old modernist residue—like a fine coating of dust—is still traceable in the degree to which she evokes "the new modernist studies" and locates her book primarily in that disciplinary context. Modernism and Cultural Conflictis a short-ish book. The writing is efficient and the material is fabulous; so fabulous, in fact, that my only complaint is that I wanted more of that material—that rich historical recovery work—and a little less of "the new modernist studies." Jo-AnnWalUce University of Alberta Works Cited Ardis, Ann L. New Woman, New Novels: Feminism andEarly Modernism. New Brunswick, N.J. and London: Rutgers University Press, 1990. Dowling, Linda. Nineteenth Century Fidion 33 (1979): 434-53. Nelson, Carolyn Christensen, ed. A New Woman Reader: Fiction, Articles, and Drama of the 1890s. Peterborough, ON: Broadview, 2001. North, Michael. Reading 1922: A Return to the Scene of the Modern. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999. Kelly Boyd. Manliness and the Boys' Story Paper in Britain. A CulturalHistory, 1855-1940. (Basingstoke, England: Palgrave Macmillan, 20Ö3), pp. 274, $75.00. A book about stories published as serials in nineteenth and twentieth century boys' periodicals is to be welcomed. This is a topic not commonly discussed, even though the stories are an important part of nineteenth century popular culture. Famous previous studies are Boys will be Boys by E. S. Turner and Penny Dreadfuls and Comics by Kevin Carpenter. Kelly Boyd gives details of various stories, the contents of which would be unknown territory to most of her readers. Especially welcome is Kelly Boyd's attempt to go beyond a factual account of the various periodicals and to link Victorian Review (2003)107 Reviews them to the major masculinties of three periods: 1855 to 1890 followed by 1890 to 1920 and then the interwar years up to 1940. She describes the masculinity for the first period as 'focussed on individualism, arrogance, and mastery of people around you; it did not esteem equality, the process of learning, or the skills of others,' (45). This she sees as a 'sturdy English variety' (40). However, I find Boyd's account of late nineteenth century periodicals for boys severely flawed. There are significant omissions and distortions in this book, adapted from a 1991 doctoral dissertation. Boyd appears to want to draw links between the lives of particular readers, the stories they read and the reading processes they used and what they derived from the stories: in the case of these tales a particular masculinity which would enable the boys to cope with various problems in their lives. In keeping with this goal, she draws attention to many previous studies of the reading of popular fiction. Most are listed somewhat irrelevantly in a footnote during a discussion on the relationship between the readers and publishers. Despite this wealth of references, she does not explicate a narrative of the reading of the stories she discusses, from the lives of the boy readers to construction of the particular masculinity. With regard to the lives of the boys there are only very general commentaries. Victorian boy readers are described as ' ordinary middle-class and working-class boys' (3) who were 'no longer precisely children although they were far from actual adulthood' and unlike the elite boys they probably had part-time jobs. (20) There is also no discussion of their history as readers, their competencies and what else they are likely to have read before or at the same time as they read these periodical stories. Many of them would have been experienced readers competent in various genres of boy and child fiction including that from evangelical publishers such as the Religious Tract Society. Since the beginning of the nineteenth century these publishers had been producing tracts, periodicals and books, all carefully prepared for specific readerships and extensively distributed through the Sunday school movement. Many were school stories which a caring relationship between two boys in which a weaker boy gives religious advice to a stronger boy who protects him from school bullies. However, she claims, without supporting evidence, that boys would have rejected heroes who 'exuded...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1923-3280
Print ISSN
0848-1512
Pages
pp. 107-110
Launched on MUSE
2015-10-07
Open Access
No
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