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Reviews the impUcit foundation of the essays, which situate literature as arising out of and reflecting its context. Relying on this model, the collection examines how juvenilia "offer a window onto the development of the self" (1 1). Individual essays try to find disparate ways in which to articulate the unique dynamic of the child-writer. Christine Alexander, for example, approaches the subject of family magazines by relying uponJ. Huizinga's 1944 anthropological study, Homo Utdens: A Study of the Play-elementin Culture. Alexander argues that through play - "the process of finding through pleasure whatinterestyou" - children constructed "an identity of authorship" (31). In her chapter onAusten and Byron's juvenilia, Rachel M. Brownstein, in turn, theorizes literary imitation by drawing on child development theory, arguing that the "coos and smiles" that babies exchange with their mothers parallel how youngwriters develop their styles by imitating writers before them (128). Alexander devotes another chapter to the examination of Bronte's early manuscripts as a form of autobiography. She explains children's autobiography according to theories of chicano autobiography, whereby the writing defines itself at once in opposition to, and in alliance with, structures of power. These somewhat randomly eclectic and less than satisfying dips into the theory pool indicate that the attempt to map out juvenilia as an independent field of study stiU struggles to establish evocative angles of inquiry. Arguably, the mostvaluable chapterin the collection is the annotated bibliography of nineteenth-century juvenilia, compiled by Lesley Peterson and LesUe Robertson. The bibliography includes published writing by children as well as pertinent scholarship. For those interested in pursuing further studies of juvenüia, the bibliography indicates the range of materials available for critical research, the areas that caU for further examination, and those that have received due scholarly attention. The Child Writer's importancelies in its originality. It performs the necessarywork of bringing together as a canon a body of literature that promises much scholarly interest and potential. Hopefully it wiU provoke a wealth of critical response thatwill engagewith the evocative materials it presents. Usa Brocklebank Brown University John Glavin, ed. Dickenson Screen. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003), xi + 225 pp., $65.00 (cloth), $25.00 (paper). In the Introduction to his edited volume DickensandCinema,John Glavin warns those readers who come to it with the idea that fidelity is the mark of a good volume 32 number 1 Reviews adaptation thatwhat follows wiU be a source of either frustration or irritation. He states boldly that "Film is not fiction by other means" and identifies as the primary motivation of the volume a desire to transform the way we think about the relationship between film and Uterature (4). As a consequence, most of the essays address the conjuncture of Dickens and cinema obHquely. The contributors rarely indulge in any direct comparison of cinematic adaptation and Uterary source, choosing instead to think historically about the ways in which Dickens changed cinema, but also the way cinema has changed Dickens. The long history of Dickens on screen means that, for all but the minority of scholars who specialize in Victorian fiction, Dickens is primarily a cinematic experience. As such, Glavin argues, itis imperative for scholars to understand how "the Dickens film now shapes Dickens's fiction" (5). Nesded within this restricted claim about the way in which adaptations of Dickens intervene in any effort to read the fiction is a much larger one about the way in which film structures our perception of the world as well as shaping any effort, even noncinematic ones, to represent it Both claims are audacious, and perhaps not ones that those committed to the uniqueness and specificity of Uterary representation might want to hear. Nevertheless, Glavin and his contributors demonstrate that it is only through the conscious subordination of questions of fiddity that an understanding of howDickens circulates today can be had. Dickens has long held a privileged place in the history of narrative cinema. Not only were his works among the first to be adapted to film, but his narrative technique and styHstic idiosyncrasies have frequendy been identified as protocinematic Sergei Eisenstein, the celebrated Soviet director, famously constructed a genealogy thatidentified Dickens as the origin and source...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1923-3280
Print ISSN
0848-1512
Pages
pp. 88-91
Launched on MUSE
2015-10-07
Open Access
No
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