Abstract

Abstract:

This essay looks at Elizabeth Gaskell’s multiplot novel Mary Barton and Anthony Trollope’s short story “The Journey to Panama” to explore how these Victorian texts activate a narrative “simultaneity effect.” Using Johannes Fabian’s idea of the “coeval” to look at how difference in status and power are registered in the story and the novel, the essay argues that both Gaskell and Trollope represent a more radical notion of “relative time.” Gaskell explores the disjunction between the prostitute Esther’s hard time of imprisonment and the more familiar temporalities of the marriage plot, while Trollope charts the dislocation of shipboard time and the temporalities of global histories. Although both texts finally accede to the temporal exigencies of the marriage plot, both challenge coevality through plot and tense.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 605-626
Launched on MUSE
2016-08-03
Open Access
No
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