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Dark Victorians

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ISBN-13: 978-0252032561
ISBN-10: 025203256X
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Hardcover, March 4, 2008
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Editorial Reviews


“[Dark Victorians’] sustained focus on the fluid nature of cultural exchange between Victorian Britain and African America offers a significant addition to the field by providing a more comprehensive view of transatlantic authorship on slavery and race in the antebellum period.”--Journal of American History

Book Description

Dark Victorians illuminates the cross-cultural influences between white Britons and black Americans during the Victorian age. In carefully analyzing literature and travel narratives by Ida B. Wells, Harriet Martineau, Charles Dickens, Frederick Douglass, Thomas Carlyle, W.E.B. Du Bois, and others, Vanessa D. Dickerson reveals the profound political, racial, and rhetorical exchanges between the groups. From the nineteenth-century black nationalist David Walker, who urged emigrating African Americans to turn to England, to the twentieth-century writer Maya Angelou, who recalls how those she knew in her childhood aspired to Victorian ideas of conduct, black Americans have consistently embraced Victorian England. At a time when scholars of black studies are exploring the relations between diasporic blacks, and postcolonialists are taking imperialism to task, Dickerson considers how Britons negotiated their support of African Americans with the controlling policies they used to govern a growing empire of often dark-skinned peoples, and how philanthropic and abolitionist Victorian discourses influenced black identity, prejudice, and racism in America.


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: University of Illinois Press (March 4, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 025203256X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0252032561
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,046,118 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. W. A. Lumley on February 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover
It was actually quite refreshing to finally lay my hand on a book that reportedly discussed this much under-investigated subject, particularly as I have been carrying out similar research myself. It was well-written, lucid in style, with lots of references which supported her arguments and I feel she made a good case. The material is written for academics interested in the subject matter, the density of the text would have benefited from illustrations to lighten it a little to appeal to a wider audience. In conclusion - a worthy, informative read, well-researched and enlightening.
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