Il romanzo inglese: caratteristiche e opere

Caratteristiche del romanzo inglese e i maggiori scrittori inglesi (2 pagine formato doc)

Appunto di angelreva


The Novel.

The literature of Augustan Age is dominated by the rise of the novel, a fictitious prose narrative or tale presenting a picture of real life. Before the eighteen century, there were prose fiction or narration, but these certainly did not present the real life (for example, Don Quixote of Cervantes, marks an importing point and it can be considered a precursor of the novel, but is the theme of this book is the battle between fantasy and reality). There were three main reasons why the novel became the dominant literary form of Augustan Age: first, the rise of philosophical rationalism; the important philosopher, John Locke, wanted to focus on the experience of the individual person, the reality of the people and the world through his senses and perceptions.


Secondly the great influence of Puritanism and Methodism in daily life: Puritanism preached the idea that man must save himself by his own efforts, hard work and his virtuous life.

The rise of novel was also influenced by the tastes of middle classes, in particularly of the new readers, the women, which began to buy and read. The new reading public we no longer interested in stories of chivalry and romance, they wanted to read stories that reflected their own interests and problems, about characters that could more or less identify with. The novel was becoming more tied to real life, in particular to the experience of the bourgeois class and the settings of the stories became more detailed and realistic.


Defoe and the realist novel. Defoe’s works are written in the form of fictional autobiography (a sort of diary or journal) to make the stories more realistic. There in no real plot, just a chronological series of connected events with a single protagonist. The protagonist, male or female, must struggle to overcome a series of misfortunes, using only his mental and physical capacity (the Puritan idea that man mast save himself and the merchant capitalism of hard work based on own ability). Defoe anticipate the semi-autobiographical novels such as Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre and Dickens’s David Copperfield.


Richardson and the bourgeois sentimental novel. Richardson wrote epistolary novels, that is novels in form of letters. In his fists book, Pamela, he talks about a young maid who, by resisting the attempts of her employer’s son to seduce her, eventually wins his hearth and marries him. The letter was also intended as a model of correct moral conduct and included a special section dedicated to young servants, teaching them how avoid being seduced by their employers. Richardson is the first novelist to write love stories exploring the psychology of his characters and the interior word, the subjective experiences and the world of passion and feelings.