This book addresses a number of concerns that have emerged in recent scholarship on the nineteenth century. It contributes to existing dialogues that consider how the nineteenth century can be thought about and critically rethought through literature and other kinds of textual production. The book offers a theoretical consideration of the concept of the nineteenth century by considering Walter Benjamin's famous work The Arcades Project, focusing on Arnold Bennett's entitled 'The Rising Storm of Life'. It outlines how recent developments in Gothic studies have provided new ways of critically reflecting upon the nineteenth century. The book draws attention to the global scope of Victorian literature, and explores the exchanges which took place between Indian and British cultures. It argues that attending to the fashioning of American texts by British publishers enables people to rethink the emergence of American literature as a material as well as an imaginative phenomenon. The relationship between literature and the European anatomical culture is carried out by exploring nineteenth-century narratives from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein in the first decades of the nineteenth-century to Charles Dickens's fiction in the 1860s. Historical fiction writers' persistent fascination with the long nineteenth century enacts a simultaneous drawing near to and distancing from the period, the lives of its inhabitants and its cultural icons, aesthetic discourses and canonical works. Adaptive practice in the neo-Victorian novel, applied both to Victorian literary precursors and the period more generally, may be better described as adaptive reuse or, perhaps appropriative reuse.
Neo-Victorian fiction participates in this on-going cultural recycling,
not just in terms of adaptations of individual period works, but of the nineteenth century
more generally, which constitutes the focus of this essay. Hence, rather than
‘adaptation’ or ‘adaptive practice’, terms more suitable for
re-visionings of specific source-texts, I will employ ‘adaptivereuse’, 2 borrowing my term from urban planning,
conservation and redevelopment. ‘Adaptivereuse’ refers to the reutilisation of
and ideologies) but also a
relational transformation – a change in nature, a conversion into something
other, namely what we want ‘the Victorian’ to signify rather than what it
was. Hence adaptive practice in the neo-Victorian novel, applied both to Victorian literary
precursors and the period more generally, may be better described as adaptivereuse (to
borrow a term from urban planning’s approach to historic conservation) or, perhaps,
appropriative reuse . Drawing on a range of neo-Victorian novels Kohlke explores
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need for adaptivere-use or
redevelopment of districts which fortune or fate has situated close to the
Culture defines how we live and work in cities. The superficial similarity of hotels, airports, convention centers, shopping malls, and skyscrapers around the world tells us little about how local lifestyles and
cultures fit within the global economy and indeed support it. In the
global economy we all have two cultures, a global consumer culture and
a local community culture. Each of us participates in a mass consumer
culture based around new products