What are the characteristics of Victorian literature?


Quick Answer

The Victorian era in literature is marked by a shift in the attitude of poets from relaxed to realism-oriented, as well as a shift in popularity from poetry to novels. Novels were granted the title of an art form, and both poems and novels confronted social conflict.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

The Victorian literary era ranged from approximately 1830 to 1900, as its beginning and end did not experience a complete severance from the previous Romantic era or following Modernism period. Artists at the forefront and demise of the period are almost indistinguishable from those of the bordering eras. Poetry remained popular at first, and the nature of the art consciously addressed social injustices associated with the rise of industrialism, technology and general social inequalities.

Charles Dickens, the most prominent writer of the Victorian era, produced works that highlight the most important aspect of the period's literature: the emphasis on social constructs in need of reform. The "art" of literature was no longer confined to introversion and reflection; honor was assigned to those who contributed to change. The most commonly targeted social issues include gender inequality, the unprecedented gap of wealth between classes, and child labor.

Series of publications in magazines paved the way for the publication and popularity of full novels. Novelists of the Victorian era incorporated aspects of poetry into their work, earning the form artistic reverence. Their productions, showcasing societal situations, often contained complex psychological and perspective undertones.

Learn more about Literature

Related Questions