Abstract

This essay argues that George Gissing develops his critical ideas about realism by correlating the balance of life and work in biography with the realist novelist’s negotiation between external details and subjective impressions in fiction. In The Unclassed (1884), New Grub Street (1891), and Charles Dickens: A Critical Study (1898), Gissing recognizes the realist aesthetic as vulnerable to the imaginative constraints of biography. Yet these works also suggest that the late Victorian conversation about realism involved a reimagining of biography’s critical uses that would account for the lives of genres as well as authors.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 879-897
Launched on MUSE
2015-12-07
Open Access
No
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