By Richard A. Kaye
In the flirtation plots of novels via Jane Austen, Charlotte Brontë, and W. M.
Thackeray, heroines study sociability via pageant with naughty coquette-doubles. In the
writing of George Eliot and Thomas Hardy, flirting harbors most likely tragic outcomes, a
perilous online game then tailored by way of male flirts within the novels of Oscar Wilde and Henry James. In
revising Gustave Flaubert’s Sentimental schooling within the Age of Innocence, Edith Wharton
opinions the nineteenth-century eu novel as morbidly keen about deferred desires.
ultimately, in works through D. H. Lawrence and E. M. Forster, flirtation involves reshape the modernist
illustration of homoerotic relations.
In The Flirt’s Tragedy: Desire
perpetually in Victorian and Edwardian Fiction, Richard Kaye makes a case for flirtation as a
targeted, missed species of eros that reveals its private, such a lot elaborately sustained fulfillment
within the nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century novel. the writer examines flirtation in
significant British, French, and American texts to illustrate how the altering aesthetic of such
fiction fixed on flirtatious hope as a paramount topic for tremendously novelistic inquiry.
the radical, he argues, accentuated questions of ambiguity and ambivalence on which an erotics of
planned imprecision thrived. however the influence of flirtation used to be not just formal. Kaye views
coquetry as an area of freedom equipped on a dialectic of simultaneous consent and refusal, as
good as an expression of "managed desire," a dicy exhibit of lady strength, and a
cagey road for the expression of dissident sexualities. via coquetry, novelists offered
their reaction to special clinical and social alterations and to the increase of the city as a
realm of more and more temporary amorous relations.
Challenging present trends
in gender, post-gender, and queer-theory feedback, and contemplating texts as diversified as
Darwin’s The Descent of Man and Gilbert and Sullivan’s The
Mikado, Kaye insists that serious value determinations of Victorian and Edwardian fiction must
circulation past current paradigms defining concerns of flirtation within the novel. The
Flirt’s Tragedy bargains a full of life, revisionary, frequently startling overview of
nineteenth-century fiction that would regulate our knowing of the heritage of the
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The Flirt's Tragedy: Desire without End in Victorian and Edwardian Fiction by Richard A. Kaye