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dc.contributor.advisorPhegley, Jennifer
dc.contributor.advisorMitchell, Linda Elizabeth
dc.contributor.authorAndersen, Amy Theresa
dc.date.issued2023
dc.date.submitted2023 Spring
dc.descriptionTitle from PDF of title page, viewed June 14, 2023
dc.descriptionDissertation advisors: Jennifer Phegley and Linda Mitchell
dc.descriptionVita
dc.descriptionIncludes bibliographical references (pages 320-337)
dc.descriptionDissertation (Ph.D.)--Department of English Language and Literature. Department of History. University of Missouri--Kansas City, 2023
dc.description.abstractThis dissertation examines representations of women artists—writers, musicians, painters, and photographers—in nineteenth-century British novels and poetry written by Charlotte Brontë, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, George Eliot, Anne Brontë, Dinah Craik, Charlotte Yonge, and Amy Levy. It analyzes how their heroines wield literal and metaphorical vision to navigate the male gaze and male surveillance of the Victorian art world. These authors utilize the symbiotic relationship between vision and art to contest binary societal definitions that insisted men were creative and women imitative. This study is arranged by forms of vision adopted by the characters addressed in each chapter. Chapter one examines how the heroines of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre and Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s Aurora Leigh exercise “spiritual vision,” which facilitates Miltonic artistic agency as they author autobiographies following the blinding of their (male) romantic counterparts. Chapter two examines George Eliot’s use of contrasting characters in Middlemarch and Daniel Deronda to show how Eliot’s women must step outside of the frame as art objects and wield “moral vision” to realize her vision of the artist as an instrument of human sympathy. Chapter three examines the “Amazonian vision” adopted by women painters in Anne Brontë’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, Dinah Craik’s Olive, and Charlotte Yonge’s The Pillars of the House; they forge entry into the historically male-dominated visual art world and achieve financial self-sufficiency by selling their work. Finally, chapter four examines how adopting “metropolitan vision” empowers the speaker of Amy Levy’s “A London Plane-Tree” poems and the Lorimer sisters in her novel The Romance of a Shop, respectively, as a poet and as professional photographers. This work utilizes an interdisciplinary approach to synthesize discussion of the novels with historical sources—primarily art histories, biographies, the authors’ diaries and letters, and nineteenth-century periodical press articles. It finds that, in consideration of historical circumstances, the women authors under discussion exercised progressive vision of their own. This vision was surprisingly radical in its early manifestations but often reliant on spiritualization and abstraction; over time, in fiction as in history, women artists’ presence in the art world gained immediacy and strength.
dc.description.tableofcontentsSpiritual vision: the miltonic artist in Jane Eyre and Aurora Leigh -- Moral vision: sympathy, vanity, and art in Middlemarch and Daniel Deronda -- Amazonian vision: painterly success in The tenant of Wildfell Hall, Olive, and The pillars of the house -- Metropolitan vision: London-inspired art in Amy Levy's "A London plane-tree" poems and The romance of a shop
dc.format.extentix, 338 pages
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/10355/95111
dc.subject.lcshEnglish literature -- Women authors -- History and criticism
dc.subject.lcshWomen and literature -- England -- History -- 19th century
dc.subject.otherDissertation -- University of Missouri--Kansas City -- English
dc.subject.otherDissertation -- University of Missouri--Kansas City -- History
dc.titleAmazonian Vision: Representations of Women Artists in Victorian Fiction
thesis.degree.disciplineEnglish (UMKC)
thesis.degree.disciplineHistory (UMKC)
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Missouri--Kansas City
thesis.degree.levelDoctoral
thesis.degree.namePh.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)


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