A reflective passage in a number of Pendennis referred indignantly and scornfully to Catherine Hayes, the criminal of old time, coupling her name with that of a then recently notorious murderer. It would appear that Thackeray had for the moment, oddly enough, omitted to think of Miss Catherine Hayes, the justly famed soprano, while certain Irish folk were obviously ignorant or oblivious of the history of Catherine Hayes the murderess.
Anyhow, there was a great outcry in the Irish press, and Thackeray was beset by private letters of indignation from enthusiastic compatriots of the prima donna. In deference to susceptibilities innocently outraged Thackeray afterwards suppressed the passage which had given offence. The thing is worth mention if only because it explains the initial letter drawn by Thackeray for chap, xv. The drawing is in itself highly comic, but must seem quite meaningless without the key.
There soon followed Fitz-Boodle's Confessions and Professions , including the series Men's Wives , already mentioned; and slightly before these, the Shabby Genteel Story, a work interrupted by Thackeray's domestic affliction and afterwards republished as an introduction to The Adventures of Philip , which took up the course of the original story many years after the supposed date of its catastrophe. The form and pressure of the time depicted are caught with striking verisimilitude, and in the boyish career of Barry Lyndon there are fine touches of a wild chivalry, simplicity, generosity, which mingle naturally with those worse qualities that, under the influence of abominable training, afterwards corrupt his whole mind and career.
The man is so infatuated with and so blind to his own roguery, he has so much dash and daring, and is on occasions so infamously treated, that it is not easy to look upon him as an entirely detestable villain until, towards the end of his course, he becomes wholly lost in brutish debauchery and cruelty. His latter career is founded on that of Andrew Robinson Stoney Bowes, who married the widow of John, 9th earl of Strathmore.
There is also no doubt a touch of Casanova in Barry Lyndon's character. Thackeray became a contributor to Punch within the first year of its existence. John Leech, who was one of the earliest contributors, had been at Charterhouse with Thackeray and the two men were friends through life. Thackeray's first series contributed to Punch did not attain or indeed deserve signal success.
He made his first hit with Jeames's Diary , begun in November , and may be said to have established his reputation by the Snob Papers , now better known as The Book of Snobs. These, besides greatly improving Thackeray's position, provoked much discussion of various kinds. Thackeray himself was naturally accused of being a snob. Thackeray's connexion with Punch came practically to an end in The severance was due partly to differences in political opinion. His personal relations with the staff of Punch always remained cordial. This is the most fitting moment for naming also Rebecca and Rowena , which towers, not only over Thackeray's other burlesques, excellent as they are, but over every other burlesque of the kind ever written.
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Its taste, its wit, its pathos, its humour, are unmatchable; and it contains some of the best songs of a particular kind ever written songs rivalled only by Peacock's best of the same sort. In was published, by Messrs Bradbury and Evans, the first of twenty-four numbers of Vanity Fair , the work which first placed Thackeray in his proper position before the public as a novelist and writer of the first rank. It was completed in , when Thackeray was thirty-seven years old; and in the same year Abraham Hayward paid a tribute to the author's powers in the Edinburgh Review.
It is probable that on Vanity Fair has been largely based the foolish cry, now heard less and less frequently, about Thackeray's cynicism, a cry which he himself, with his keen knowledge of men, foresaw and provided against, amply enough as one might have thought, at the end of the eighth chapter, in a passage which is perhaps the best commentary ever written on the author's method. He has explained how he wishes to describe men and women as they actually are, good, bad and indifferent, and to claim a privilege.
Such people there are living and flourishing in the world — Faithless, Hopeless, Charityless: let us have at them, dear friends, with might and main. Some there are, and very successful too, mere quacks and fools; and it was to combat and expose such as those, no doubt,. As to another accusation which was brought against the book when it first came out, that the colours were laid on too thick, in the sense that the villains were too villainous, the good people too goody-goody, the best and completest answer to that can be found by anyone who chooses to read the work with care.
Osborne is, and is meant to be, a poor enough creature, but he is an eminently human being, and one whose poorness of character is developed as he allows bad influences to tell upon his vanity and folly. The good in him is fully recognized, and comes out in the beautiful passage describing his farewell to Amelia on the eve of Waterloo, in which passage may be also found a sufficient enough answer to the statement that Amelia is absolutely insipid and uninteresting. So with the companion picture of Rawdon Crawley's farewell to Becky Sharp: who that reads it can resist sympathy, in spite of Rawdon's vices and shady shifts for a living, with his simple bravery and devotion to his wife?
As for Becky, a character that has since been imitated a host of times, there is certainly not much to be said in her defence. We know of her, to be sure, that she thought she would have found it easy to be good if she had been rich, and we know also what happened when Rawdon, released without her knowledge from a spunginghouse, surprised her alone with and singing to Lord Steyne in the house in Mayfair.
It was all done before Rebecca could interpose. She stood there trembling before him. She admired her husband, strong, brave, and victorious. As to the extent of the miserable Becky's guilt in the Steyne matter, Thackeray leaves it practically open to the reader to form what conclusion he will. There is, it should be added, a distinct touch of good in Becky's conduct to Amelia at Ostend in the last chapter of the book, and those who think that too little punishment is meted out to the brilliant adventuress in the end may remember this to her credit. It is supreme art in the treatment of her character that makes the reader understand and feel her attractiveness, though he knows her extraordinarily evil qualities; and in this no writer subsequent to Thackeray who has tried to depict one of the genus Becky Sharp has even faintly succeeded.
Among the minor characters there is not one — and this is not always the case even with Thackeray's chief figures — who is incompletely or inconsistently depicted; and no one who wishes fully to understand and appreciate the book can afford to miss a word of it. Vanity Fair was followed by Pendennis , Esmond and The Newcomes , which appeared respectively in , and It might be more easy to pick holes critically in Pendennis than in Vanity Fair. Pendennis himself, after his boyish passion and university escapades, has disagreeable touches of flabbiness and worldliness; and the important episode of his relations with Fanny Bolton, which Thackeray could never have treated otherwise than delicately, is so lightly and tersely handled that it is a little vague even to those who read between the lines.
It can hardly be said that there is adequate preparation for the final announcement that those relations have been innocent, and one can hardly see why it should have been so long delayed. This does not, of course, affect the value of the book as a picture of middle- and upper-class life of the time, the time when Vauxhall still existed, and the haunt for suppers and songs which Thackeray in this book called the Back Kitchen, and it is a picture filled with striking figures. In some of these, notably in that of Foker, Thackeray went, it is supposed, very close to actual life for his material, and in that particular case with a most agreeable result.
If they were, for once Thackeray's hand forgot its cunning. Here, as in the case of Amelia Sedley Vanity Fair , the heroine has been thought a little insipid; and there may be good ground for finding Laura Pendennis dull, though she has a spirit of her own. In later books she becomes, what Thackeray's people very seldom are, a tiresome as well as an uninviting person. Costigan is unique, and so is Major Pendennis, a type which, allowing for differences of periods and manners, will exist as long as society exists, and which has been seized and depicted by Thackeray as by no other novelist.
The Major's two encounters, from both of which he comes out victorious, one with Costigan in the first, the other with Morgan in the second volume, are true touches of genius. In opposition to the worldliness of the Major, with which Pendennis does not escape being tainted, we have Warrington, whose nobility of nature has come unscathed through a severe trial, and who, a thorough gentleman if a rough one, is really the guardian of Pendennis's career.
There is, it should be noted, a characteristic and acknowledged confusion in the plot of Pendennis , which will not spoil any intelligent reader's pleasure. Probably most readers of The Newcomes to whom the book is mentioned think first of the fine, chivalrous and simple figure of Colonel Newcome, who stands out in the relief of almost ideal beauty of character against the crowd of more or less imperfect and more or less base personages who move through the novel.
There is plenty of kindliness in the treatment of the young men who, like Clive Newcome himself and Lord Kew, possess no very shining virtue beyond that of being honourable gentlemen; in the character of J. It may be that there is too close an insistence on the fiendish temper of Mrs Mackenzie and on the sufferings she inflicts on the colonel; but it must be remembered that this heightens the singular pathos of the closing scenes of the colonel's life. It has seemed convenient to take The Newcomes after Pendennis , because Pendennis and his wife reappear in this book as in The Adventures of Philip ; but Esmond was written and published before The Newcomes.
To some students Esmond seems and will seem Thackeray's capital work. It has not been rivalled as a romance reproducing with unfailing interest and accuracy the figures, manners and phrases of a past time, and it is full of beautiful touches of character. As to Esmond's marriage with the lady whom he has served and loved as a boy, that is a matter for individual judgment.
Beatrix, it has been indicated above, is wonderfully drawn: and not the least wonderful thing about her is her reappearance as the jaded, battered, worldly, not altogether unkindly, Baroness in The Virginians. It was just what Beatrix must have come to, and her decline is handled with the lightest and finest touch. Both sets were written for the purpose of lecturing. In was published a most delightful burlesque, The Rose and the Ring , whereof the origin has already been mentioned.
In Thackeray stood unsuccessfully as a parliamentary candidate for Oxford against Mr Cardwell, and in the same year appeared the first number of The Virginians , a sequel to Esmond. This is a most unequal work inferior, as sequels are apt to be, to Esmond as an historical romance, less compact and coherent, prone to divagation and desultoriness, yet charming enough in its lifelikeness, in the wit and wisdom of its reflexions, and, as has been said, in its portrait of Beatrix grown old. The last number of The Virginians came out in , and in the same year Thackeray undertook the editorship of the Cornhill Magazine.
In the Cornhill appeared from his pen Lovel the Widower , previously written, with different names for some of the personages, in dramatic form; The Adventures of Philip ; the Roundabout Papers ; and the story, unhappily never finished, called Denis Duval. Industrial revolution was a great point in working out political economy and arising viewpoint of capitalism which has become a historical issue. Moreover, G. During the decades between each nation of Europe underwent more upheavals than they had previously experienced in centuries. And the quick Writers could notice the necessity of depicting that not only in historical books, but also to transfer this knowledge by creating a historical fiction.
Harry E. On the one hand, it was realized that different ages and cultures are systematic wholes obeying their own internal laws. By synchronic it is meant that it is analyzed only at one point in time, whereas diachronic regards a phenomenon in terms of developments through time. As far as Sir Walter Scott and his influence on development of historical novel are concerned, G.
In this connections G. The new school of French historians formed itself under the influence of the Scottish novelist. It means that stability of English development made it possible for newly- awoken historical feeling transform to into broad, objective, epic form. Thus, the new form of historical fiction arose, which set an example to follow for other writers. The reason why Scott is perceived as the most prominent leading figure of that genre is that he was honest and keenly observant of the real facts including enormous social and economical transformations as well as never- ending class struggle.
His world-view ties him very closely to those sections of society which had been precipitated into ruin by the industrial revolution and the rapid growth of capitalism. Scott belong neither with ardent enthusiasts of this development, nor with its pathetic, passionate indicters. Therefore, rarely did raise contemporary social issues, but he attempted to include the earliest stages of English history into his writing. Observing the clash of the cultures, seeing people of high spirit who lived in a civilized age and country, but who retained strongly to ancient traditions, Scott noticed fictional potential and the basis for the excellent story that may be placed at certain historical period.
It took some years to complete the novel, which eventually became a cultural phenomenon. This caused an important nineteenth century strand in culture, historicism, which was drawn to search for something that could resist the power of time, and thus, historical fiction of Victorian era was created.
There were historians, most notably Thomas Carlyle and Thomas Babington Macaulay, who were major literary figures in their own right, and whose works were devoured by a public eager for history. Historical novels, however, were by no means a matter for the elite. Together with the Gothic and the tale of terror, the historical novels of Walter Scott and Ainsworth were major influences on working-class and popular literature Bowen Thus, historical novels can be described as the most successful form of the century, or It is also important to emphasize the fact that it was the Victorian era that established novel as a leading form of literature in English.
Following the development of society, the majority of writers were concerned to attract a large middle-class reading public rather than to please aristocratic patrons. It was directed to middle class in order to incite sympathy and push for moral and social change. Dominant feature of Victorian historical novels was the issue of verisimilitude, that is close representation of to the actual state of the age depicted. There were writers who noticed the change and who were willing to describe the events with due consideration to the history, and the leading figure was Sir Walter Scott who established the role model for modern historical novel.
The form of novel was highly developed in the Victorian era. Chapter II W. Thackeray in the context of his epoch 2. It was because of the rise of middle-class which was the reason for middle-class literary art flourish increasingly Daiches That is why many Victorian writers attempted to move, instruct and inspire the society. William Makepeace Thackeray is one of the most prominent authors of the nineteenth century. After father's death in , William stayed in India with his mother until when he was sent to England to be educated.
On their journey there was a short stopover at St. Helena island, where imprisoned Napoleon was pointed to little boy. He eats three sheep every day and all the little children he can lay hands on! Initially he stayed partly with his grand- uncle Moore at the Manor House at Hedley and partly at Chiswick with aunt Ritchie. At an early age he was sent to public school where he received an education of a gentleman. Benjamin notices some traces of Thackeray's school experience in his writings.
At the age of eleven, further education was given to Thackeray at prestigious Charterhouse School, which was much detested by the boy, who later in his fiction ironically called it Slaughterhouse. Much of the experience gained in so popular in nineteenth century public schools served well for the descriptions in the historical novels as he himself was the witness of the conditions of early nineteenth century schools. These days, Thackeray is chiefly known for Vanity Fair and less securely for his other historical novels.
Many of them are considered to be realistic, which means they attempted to depict subjects in accordance to objective reality. Although critical of society, Thackeray remained basically conservative with his writing in the realistic tradition and distinguished from the exaggerations and sentimentality. Like Dickens, Thackeray was opposed to utilitarian beliefs and deplored the absence of spontaneous affection in daily life.
His aim was to present the society the way it truly was. Critics often praise Thackeray for his ability to satirize the whole humanity while retaining a light touch. In the book William Makepeace Thackeray: Literary Life by Peter Shillingburg the image emerges of Thackeray as an intellectual and demanding author, sensitive to the complexities of contemporary Victorian life, and challenging middleclass Victorian assumptions about identity and class.
Moreover, W. All those remarks confirm the uniqueness of Thackeray as an author. In addition to that, Thackeray is considered to be principal satirist of the nineteenth century. He is a man women satirists are very rare who takes it upon himself to correct, censure, and ridicule the follies and vices of society and thus to bring contempt and derision upon aberrations from a desirable and civilized norm. His wish was to reconcile and improve the society, nevertheless, he is far from serious moralizing and expresses his opinions using light humour.
It is because he saw himself as the writer serving necessary function of teaching and amusing. It established Britain very powerful and self- confident empire that held more production than any other country. As David McDowall The changes that in a result created powerful Britain should be enumerated.
In terms of economic changes and social changes, the country was transformed by the Industrial Revolution which began in the eighteenth century, and which is now considered as a turning point in human history, since it influenced almost every aspect of daily life. The impact of industrialization, which started in Britain and was spread around the whole of Europe, was enormous.
There are numerous reasons for occurrences of the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain and the massive impact it had over other countries. To start with, in comparison to other European countries, British society was more willing to accept some changes. As a result of Enlightenment philosophies, their receptiveness towards new steps in improving their lives was greater than in other societies. Also, the crucial issue was the end of feudalism which opened the way for the growth of social and institutional changes. Furthermore, another important factor was that Britain received enormous financial and natural sources support from the overseas colonies they had previously established.
Due to this fact Britain was able to produce and use developing technologies more effectively. Also it is believed that Britain was able to take advantage of its geographical features. First of all, it was an island separated from the mainland, with dense population on small area. Thus, the available labour power was strong and effective. In addition, the land of England was rich in natural supplies such as coal, iron, tin, copper, lead, limestone and water power, which had its consequences in excellent conditions for industrial development.
Last, but not least, crucial factor favouring the Industrial Revolution in Britain was the fact that it helped Britain to have been the only European nation remained safe from the financial and economic ravage of Napoleonic wars; thus, it accelerated the onset of technological development. Professor Kenneth O. Morgan explains that: For the first time in the history of the world a country was being revolutionized by its industries. Lancashire and Yorkshire replaced East Anglia and the south- west of England as the major cloth- making regions.
The iron industry moved north from Sussex and the Forest of Dean to the coalfields of the midlands, Scotland and Wales. The regions which had traditionally been the poor, underpopulated fringes of British life were transformed; they became the crowded centers of wealth and vitality. Other nations bought her textiles, pottery, iron-ware and even steam engines. Such an increase in trade and wealth resulted in new patterns of working. In the beginning, the majority of population worked in agriculture and related industries, however, the number of people living in towns had begun to increase.
This led to enormous urbanization and the rise of new cities. Nevertheless, it resulted in overcrowded and unhealthy cities, as proper drains and water supplies were still limited in the beginning of nineteenth century. Morgan explains the situation as follows: Despite the harsh working conditions, families flocked to work in the developing industries. Wages were higher and employment more regular than in the countryside. However, their new homes in the growing centers of the new industries were often as grim as the worst factories.
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The long hours demanded by the owners left little time to walk long distances each morning, so they lived crammed together, close to the factories or workshops. Many young newcomers were forced to settle for cheap lodging house. In Leeds such houses averaged nine beds to a room and, it was reported, five lodgers to a bed.
Water came from taps at streets corners and sewage was piled high against house walls. Morgan Due to such conditions the epidemics of different diseases such as typhus, dysentery, measles, influenza and others killing thousands of people come as no surprise. What was important, the living conditions in the course of nineteenth century started to improve. Government and local plans aimed to make towns cleaner places, and the construction of housing was innovated to prevent people from living in cramped streets.
These health officers also tried to make sure that new housing was less crowded. Nevertheless, due to the Industrial Revolution workers died because of diseases spread in workplaces, such as chest diseases in the mines, typhoid and cholera. However, thanks to industrialization manual labour was transited towards machine- based manufacturing. There was mechanization of industries, development of iron making techniques and also the introduction of steam power, which resulted in the increase of production capacity.
Moreover, roads and railways were highly improved, and colonial expansion led to introducing canals which enabled international trade to flourish. All these facts improved the economic state of the country. Its strength was not in a larger population … It lay in industry and trade, and the navy which protected this trade. Having obtained such a strong position, Britain attempted to develop its trading posts and to control world traffic and world market to its own advantage, so that other countries could be prevented from expansion.
The crucial issue in terms of expanding British power was taking control in Indian subcontinent, where British were able to gain wealth and power. As far as social changes are concerned, the Industrial Revolution made the middle class a leading power in the society.
Middle class consisted so far from merchants, traders and farmers. Since ordinary people were given an opportunity for being employed in new mines and factories due to industrialization, there came the rapid growth in number of industrialists and factory owners. With the growth of industry, middle class people were able to develop their own businesses and improve their status in the society. McDowall rightly states: In the nineteenth century the middle class grew more quickly than ever before and included greater differences of wealth, social position and kind of work. It included those who worked in the professions such as the church, the law, medicine, the civil service, the diplomatic service, merchant banking and the army and the navy.
It also included the commercial classes, however, who were the real creators of wealth in country. They believed in hard work, a regular style of life and being careful with the money. This class included both the very successful and rich industrialists and the small shopkeepers and office workers of the growing towns and suburbs. Gentlemen did not deal with manual working; usually they held the position in law, politics or they were priests.
The early nineteenth century Britain was an oligarchy, which means that only minority of men were able to vote. However, it is working class that established majority of society. The Industrial Revolution had other effects on society, namely, due to innovative steam power used in improvement of processes of printing, people encountered massive expansion of book publishing and newspapers, which reinforced the flourishing of literacy and rising demand for mass political participation. Increased number of literate people resulted in the development of literary genres, especially the novel.
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Furthermore, people were able to afford to send their children to public schools. These schools were aimed to give girls good education as far as proper behavior and housekeeping, they were taught how to sing, play musical instruments, sew and embroider. Upper class girls received their education from the governess, which was popular work for women at that time. These public schools provided many of the officers for the armed forces, the colonial administration and the civil service. Britain with its power was the one country that invested great amounts of resources and money in fighting back the French, especially with the use of Royal Navy which was irreplaceable in winning against French fleet and taking back occupied colonies.
In coalition with European armies Britain gained fame by defeating Napoleon in the battle of Waterloo in Belgium on 18 June The battle of Waterloo was considered a crucial point in the history of the nineteenth century, and it is main historical event dealt with in the novel Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray. After brief absence due to forced abdication, Napoleon came back motivated by unstable economic and social condition of France and unpopularity of Louis XVIII.
He was wishing to regain his power and make France European Empire. The mightiest forces of Europe, England and Prussia, were to put an end to Napoleonic rule. Nevertheless, the victory was not instant and easy to come. He also insisted that France was not severely punished. He did not want an angry France declaring war once more, in revenge.
Britain gained Malta- a major base in the Mediterranean- the islands of Trinidad and Tobago in the West Indies, the Cape of Good, Hope and Ceylon- two vital staging posts in the trade routes to the east. Morgan The victory of Allied army over the rule of Emperor Napoleon confirmed Britain as the greatest trading, industrial and military nation in the world in the nineteenth century.
Thackeray in years , was first published in 20 monthly issues. The action of the book is set a generation earlier than its author lived. However, the plan is foiled by George Osborne who intends to marry Amelia and does not want a governess for a sister-in-law. Due to his marriage, Rawdon's rich aunt disinherits him. A friend of George Osborne, William Dobbin helps George to marry Amelia, after George's father has forbidden the marriage on account of the Sedley's loss of fortune. Because of George's marriage, old Osborne disinherits him.
Both young couples endeavor to live without sufficient funds. When George dies at Waterloo, Amelia would have starved if it was not for William Dobbin who anonymously contributed to her welfare. Joseph goes back to his post in India, claiming such valor at Waterloo and meanwhile both Rebecca and Amelia give birth to sons. Becky, disappointed of her social status, becomes the favorite of the great Lord Steyne, she accumulates some money.
When Rawdon discovers Rebecca in her treachery, he is more than convinced that money means more to her than he or the son whom she has always hated. He refuses to see her again and takes a post in Coventry Island, where unfortunately he dies of yellow fever. Amelia gives up her son to his grandfather Osborne due to the fact that her parents are starving and she can neither When William Dobbin comes back from the service, he convinces old Osborne to make a will leaving George half of his fortune and providing for Amelia.
Meanwhile, Rebecca, having lost the respectability of a husband, wanders in Europe for a couple of years. Rebecca once again tries to ensnare Joseph. Although eventually she does not marry him, she manages to swindle all his money. At the end of the book Rebecca has the money necessary to live in Vanity Fair and she appears to be respectable.
Little Rawdon, upon the death of his uncle Pitt and his cousin Pitt, becomes the heir of Queen's Crawley.
As far as the title is concerned, Thackeray's original title was Pen and Pencil Sketches of English Society, which indicated his intention to describe a succession of social situations. As he was writing his novel, the idea of society as a Vanity Fair came to him, and he changed both his plan for the novel and the title. Vanity Fair refers to a stop along the pilgrim's progress: a never-ending fair held in a town called Vanity, which is meant to represent man's sinful attachment to worldly things.
The novel is now considered a classic, and has inspired several film adaptations, one of which is discussed later in the thesis. Yet, the spectrum of the society he describes is limited to the middle and the upper classes. Bunyan dealt with the sins of individual using allegory, whereas Thackeray portrays male and female vices providing a poignant social satire.
Due to such a multi-plot, the novel was innovative. The unique subtitle may be also understood by readers that actually there was nothing heroic about the society Thackeray ventured to depict from the point of view of the realist of his times. It is said that: Thackeray saw how capitalism and imperialism with their emphasis on wealth, material goods and ostentation had corrupted society and how the inherited social order and institutions, including the aristocracy, the church, the military, the foreign service, regarded only family, rank, power and appearance.
These values morally crippled and emotionally bankrupted every social class from servants through the middle class to the aristocracy. High and low, individuals were selfish and incapable of loving. That is to imply the fact that heroism actually did not exist. Due to the fact that during the Victorian period a novel became a dominant form of literary writing and Vanity Fair is considered to be one of the classic example of the era, some general characteristics of Victorian novel should be listed.
To begin with, writers became more realistic and began using the realities of everyday life in their work feeling that they had social and moral responsibility to present society the way it really functioned. Moreover, social and economic conditions were used as the themes, especially reasons for women getting married, as well as their plight and fight for equality see: Armstrong Also, there was a concept of authorial intrusion and idea to addressing to the reader. It is seen when in the book W. Here is a short example from the book Furthermore, it is the narrator who is omniscient and is able to distinguish what is right or wrong by making comments on the plot.
Last but not least, Victorian novel features include setting of the story in the city as a symbol of industrial civilization, anonymous lives and lost identity. Usually Thackeray simply describes what happens, however, sometimes he refrains from telling the reader directly how the character feels or thinks. Rather the author describes what situation is instead of showing it. Thackeray does not say Amelia is jealous. Such expressions are rather used ironically. As for the sentence structure in the novel, it may range from a few words to a whole paragraph.
This is used not to make a reader bored, and it is also done by slowing or quickening the pace of the plot.
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Thackeray's concern with time has caused him to be called the novelist of memory. The action is set in the past, and the narrator compares and contrasts the past with the present as he moves between them; occasionally he tells us a future event or outcome. The characters' memories of the past help to characterize them in the present.
Thackeray also shows the effect which the passage of time has on the characters. His concern with time is reflected in the structure; the narrator occasionally interrupts the chronology, jumps back in time, and returns to the point where he stopped the chronology. Moreover, witty dialogues and Moreover, there is an attempt to depict accurately the mentality, customs, social, economic and political states of the period. Since Vanity Fair is considered to be a historical novel, some research has been made to prove it.
Time frames are not exact. The plot of the book continues to develop with its peak in historical event, namely the invasion of Napoleon on Europe and Waterloo battle in Around the same year the two heroines of the book, Rebecca Sharp and Amelia Sedley, give birth to their sons. Thus, it can be assumed that the action closes somewhere in the thirties of the nineteenth century The prominent novel of the author embraces some crucial themes of these times. The most essential is one suggested in the title, that is vanity. The book is actually saturated with the vanity of some characters described as social climbers, great example of whom is Becky Sharp.
She is obsessed with the idea of gaining higher social status which provides the position and wealth. To satisfy her desires she is able to marry anyone who has money on his disposal, since her slyness and greediness is stronger than ability to love. Even if one of her plans fails, she quickly comes with another ideas to achieve her goals.
Who would have dreamed of Lady Crawley dying so soon? She was one of those sickly women that might have lasted these ten years- Rebecca thought to herself, in all the woes of repentance- and I might have been my lady! I might have led that old man whither I would.
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I might have thanked Mrs. Bute for her patronage, and Mr. Pitt for his insufferable condescension. I would have had the town house newly furnished and decorated. I would have had the handsomest carriage in London, and a box at the opera; and I would have been presented next season. All this might have been; and now- now all was doubt and mystery. But Rebecca was a young lady of too much resolution and energy of character to permit herself much useless and unseemly sorrow for the irrevocable past; so, having devoted only the proper portion of regret to Thackeray, , Sedley , comments on her behaviour by saying: "I had thought her a mere social climber.
I see now she's a mountaineer. Such an ironic comment suggests that some people are capable of sacrifices and plotting intrigues to achieve a position in the society. Moreover, another characters of the story, as for example Mrs. It is clear that the author does not underestimate the necessity of having a home, food, clothes; rather he exposes the cruelty, the futility and the deception of making possessions and having power as the only life aim.
Regarding others as commodities or objects to be used for one's own ends is widespread, almost universal, in this society, not only within marriage. For instance, Miss Crawley, the old spinster, uses Miss Briggs, Becky, and her relatives to amuse herself, she enjoys having fun from the stories they tell or make fun of their behaviours, however, she does not hesitate to leave them in case they no longer suit her needs.
She also informs that Vanity Fair explores the view that all forms of emotion and motivation may be evaluated according to economic calculus. According to W. What is worse, it appears that few marriages are truly happy.