The History of Pendennis: His Fortunes and Misfortunes, His Friends and His Greatest Enemy
Oxford University Press, 1994 - 1061 Seiten
Set mainly in London's bohemian and literary underworld, Pendennis (1848-50) is the funny and uninhibited story of Arthur Pendennis. Son of a selfless widow, he moves from one disastrous romantic entanglement to another. After running up bills at university and studying to become a lawyer, he drifts into a literary career, meeting a host of second-rate journalists and circling the corrupt fringes of the upper classes. Pendennis is one of the earliest and greatest of the Victorian Bildungsromanen - introspective novels chronicling the author's growth to maturity under a thin veil of fiction. On coming across Pendennis in later life, Thackeray was heard to mutter: 'It is very like. Yes, it is very like.' Born into the upper classes, Thackeray had lost his patrimony on the gambling tables and had married imprudently. He had slaved for ten years in London's literary bohemia, and it was here that he met the men who inspired many of his characters. In his introduction John Sutherland considers the parallels between Thackeray's life and that of Pendennis, and examines the changes taking place in Victorian England throughout the years of the novel, particularly during the revolutionary 1840s.
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