Victorian Lives: Life-Writing in the Victorian Period

Module code: EN7125

How did the Victorians write about their own and others’ lives? What did they reveal of their private lives, as well as their public personas? This module aims to explore 19th century life-writing (biography and autobiography) through a wide variety of texts, including literary Lives; working-class oral life histories; biography as a Victorian institution (The Dictionary of National Biography) and female auto/biography.

You'll look at themes such as memory, childhood, family relationships and religion in Victorian life writing. You'll also look at the conflicts between public and private life, what was acceptable and what was censored in Victorian biographical writing and how class and gender influenced Victorian life-writing.

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