The woman in white narrative structure
Wilkie Collins's classic thriller took the world by storm on its first appearance in , with everything from dances to perfumes to dresses named in honor of the "woman in white. The catalyst for the mystery is Walter Hartright's encounter on a moonlit road with a mysterious woman dressed head to toe in white. She is in a state of confusion and distress, and when Hartright helps her find her way back to London she warns him against an unnamed "man of rank and title. Collins brilliantly uses the device of multiple narrators to weave a story in which no one can be trusted, and he also famously creates, in the figure of Count Fosco, the prototype of the suave, sophisticated evil genius. The Woman in White is still passed as a masterpiece of narrative drive and excruciating suspense.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Learn English Through Story ★ Subtitles ✦ The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
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This well-printed, nicely-presented volume is the latest to appear in the Broadview Editions series. In their introduction the editors give an authoritative and discerning account of the appeal of the novel for its first readers.
They then go on to offer an erudite and very accessible account of the ways in which concerns in the s about asylums, dreams and nightmares and mesmerists find their way into the novel and, in an uncanny way, tie in with its much admired narrative structure. Inevitably the attention paid to different elements of the novel varies: the discussion of marriage laws must be one of the most detailed and erudite around, and the discussion of the Italian Question is only a little less full.
Some other aspects of the edition, however, are less clear. This is particularly the case when Bachman and Cox try to explain which version of the novel this current edition is based on. So far so good. However they also write:. In general we have restored manuscript readings when there have been textual questions that could not be resolved by comparing the multiple versions.
In instalments we have chosen to restore a number of passages that Collins himself restored in the three volume edition on the grounds that these readings were apparently the version he had originally intended and preferred. This editorial tinkering prompts a question: What text of the novel are we being offered? This may be unfair but it is not clear, at least to this reader, what passages have been reinstated and where.
As far as I can see, the only restoration indicated as one reads through the novel is a description of hanged curates in instalment If, as the editors imply, they have inserted other passages, then it seems essential to indicate where these are located.
Otherwise we are left with what seems to be a mongrel text—being neither one thing or the other and representing not what Collins ever saw but what twenty-first century editors imagine he would have liked to see. One might say that such mysteries are appropriate for a work abounding in questions of identity and illegitimacy, but they are surely weaknessess in a text offering itself as a scholarly edition. Other textual apparatus is of the high standard that traditionally characterises Broadview texts.
Like other editions this one also contains an Appendix of contemporary reviews and source documents. The editors have also taken the imaginative step of including several of the illustrations accompanying the novel. So whilst the generous number of illustrations is a good idea and they reflect the centrality of pictures in the Victorian novel-reading experience, there is again some slight confusion. If these illustrations are important more needs to be said about them; if they are not important then why include them?
Since great play is made of the way in which this text conforms to what Collins would probably have wanted, it would, at the very least, be useful to know if Collins approved of the illustrations scattered though it. Alongside its advantages, then, this edition does have flaws and loose ends. It is also pricey. Intended for the student market it will have to compete —at least in the British market—with cheaper editions from OUP and Penguin. Bachman and Cox editors have a sure grasp of their subject, but it is a pity that they have left readers guessing concerning a number of the editorial decisions that they have made.
The Woman in White
Philipp Erchinger's densely argued essay, "Secrets Not Revealed: Possible Stories in Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White" , which appeared in an issue of Connotations devoted to the theme of "Roads Not Taken," seeks to make Collins's text yield up some of those narrative or textual secrets that, as Frank Kermode maintains in his essay "Secrets and Narrative Sequence," are concealed by an author's efforts to "'foreground' sequence and message" Kermode Such secrets, Kermode argues, remain hidden to "all but abnormally attentive scrutiny" and are only brought to light by a "reading so minute, so intense and slow that it seems to run counter to one's 'natural' sense of what a novel is" Kermode Erchinger is clearly an attentive reader. He is also an inventive reader who suggests that there is no good reason to suppose that it is Laura rather than Anne who escapes the plotters and marries Hartright.
Sensation novels, a genre characterized by scandalous narratives and emotionally and socially provocative dialogue and plots, had their heyday in England in the s and s, in the midst of growing concern about codes of behavior in marriage. Largely excluded from the academic canon of the late twentieth century, sensation novels had an impact on Victorian culture that we have only recently begun to evaluate. Exploring the central metaphor of marital violence in these novels, Marlene Tromp uncovers the relationship between the representations of such violence in fiction and in the law. Her investigation demonstrates that sensational constructions of gender, marriage, "brutal" relationships, and even murder, were gradually incorporated into legal debates and realist fiction as the Victorian understanding of what was "real" changed. Sensation fiction's reconfiguration of literary and social norms, evident in works by Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, and Mary Elizabeth Braddon, is also explicitly evoked in the "realist" representations of domestic violence in novels by Margaret Oliphant and George Eliot.
The Woman in White Analysis
This well-printed, nicely-presented volume is the latest to appear in the Broadview Editions series. In their introduction the editors give an authoritative and discerning account of the appeal of the novel for its first readers. They then go on to offer an erudite and very accessible account of the ways in which concerns in the s about asylums, dreams and nightmares and mesmerists find their way into the novel and, in an uncanny way, tie in with its much admired narrative structure. Inevitably the attention paid to different elements of the novel varies: the discussion of marriage laws must be one of the most detailed and erudite around, and the discussion of the Italian Question is only a little less full. Some other aspects of the edition, however, are less clear. This is particularly the case when Bachman and Cox try to explain which version of the novel this current edition is based on. So far so good. However they also write:. In general we have restored manuscript readings when there have been textual questions that could not be resolved by comparing the multiple versions.
The Woman in White is Wilkie Collins 's fifth published novel, written in It is considered to be among the first mystery novels and is widely regarded as one of the first and finest in the genre of " sensation novels ". The story is sometimes considered an early example of detective fiction with protagonist Walter Hartright employing many of the sleuthing techniques of later private detectives. The use of multiple narrators including nearly all the principal characters draws on Collins's legal training,   and as he points out in his preamble: "the story here presented will be told by more than one pen, as the story of an offence against the laws is told in Court by more than one witness".
This edition returns to the original text that galvanized England when it was published in serial form in All the Year Round magazine in The appendices include contemporary reviews, along with essays on lunacy, asylums, mesmerism, and the rights of women. Account Options Login. Koleksiku Bantuan Penelusuran Buku Lanjutan.
The novel opens with a brief preamble explaining the purpose of the narrative: to lay out a detailed description of events that will function similarly to a legal record. In order to give the most complete account of events, the story will be told from the perspectives of different individuals who have insights into what happened. Walter Hartright , a twenty-eight year old art teacher, is introduced as the individual who is overseeing and compiling the various narratives, and as the character who will begin the story. The events of the narrative begin in London, on the last day of July.
Noted for its suspenseful plot and unique characterization, the successful novel brought Collins great fame; he adapted it into a play in This dramatic tale, inspired by an actual criminal case, is told through multiple narrators. Frederick Fairlie, a wealthy hypochondriac, hires virtuous Walter Hartright to tutor his beautiful niece and heiress, Laura, and her homely, courageous half sister, Marian Halcombe. Glyde is assisted by sinister Count Fosco , a cultured , corpulent Italian who became the archetype of subsequent villains in crime novels. Through the perseverance of Hartright and Marian, Glyde and Fosco are defeated and killed, allowing Hartright to marry Laura.
Sensation fiction thus fused the Gothic romance with the Realist novel, finding horrors not in some fantastical Medieval castle, but behind the doors of apparently normal suburban semi-detached houses, where secrets festered and multiplied. Usage terms Public Domain. This was an updated complaint long held against Gothic novels. The world was becoming debilitated by the shocks and collisions of modernity. He is a man prepared to plot actual murder to retain his hold on the cash and also to keep his own desperate secret secure. The intricacies of the plot, however, defy easy summary, each convolution and partial revelation driving the reader on to the next scene, and the next, disclosing the secret like a series of Russian dolls.