There is a shortage of men in neo-Victorianism. Or that, at least, is how it would appear to look at many critical works on neo-Victorianism at the present time. Eleanor Catton’s Man Booker Prize winning novel, The Luminaries (2013), with its central core of male characters and rugged reflection on the distance between men’s actions and men’s motivations, is a noteworthy example of a potentially overtly masculine turn in narrative perspective within the genre. Catton’s
novel is about the tales men tell one another, and while the gendered soliloquising of Walter Moody quoted above is unusually direct even within The Luminaries as a whole, it does indicate a grappling with the Victoriographiesmultiplicities of male identities within the novel. ‘What’, the novel seems to ask, ‘does male kinship mean?’
Extract from Ann Heilmann and Mark Llewellyn’s Introduction to Neo-Victorian Masculinities in Victoriographies. You can read the full article here.
Victoriographies is published triannually at www.euppublishing.com/vic.