Heroic commitment in Richardson, Eliot and James by Patricia McKee

By Patricia McKee

Patricia McKee demonstrates that Richardson, Eliot, and James see disorderliness and indeterminacy within the human self, human kinfolk, and literature as basic resources of meaningfulness. The relationships those novels painting as so much gratifying are unsettled and unsettling, interfering with instead of contributing to social balance.

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By Patricia McKee

Patricia McKee demonstrates that Richardson, Eliot, and James see disorderliness and indeterminacy within the human self, human kinfolk, and literature as basic resources of meaningfulness. The relationships those novels painting as so much gratifying are unsettled and unsettling, interfering with instead of contributing to social balance.

Show description

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CRITICAL ISSUES belief constitutes the uniquely human capacity to make ex­ perience meaningful. Partiality is binding for George Eliot, as it is for William James. " As William James says, practically one's conviction that the evidence one goes by is of the real objective brand, is only one more subjective opinion added to the lot. . There is this,—there is that; there is indeed nothing which some one has not thought absolutely true, while his neighbor deemed it absolutely false; and not an absolutist among them seems ever to have considered .

3 (1984), 61-79. « Mauss, The Gift, p. 76. , p. 70. CRITICAL ISSUES Such oppositions may hold in theory, Mauss suggests, but in practice they may not hold at all. It is in the excesses of social relations that ally rather than distinguish various human beings and various human interests that Karl Marx also identified an escape from the experience of alienation. In Marx's writing, alienation is inescapable to the extent that private property is the primary goal of human life, just as, in Freudian theory, alienation is inescapable to the extent that self-possession is the goal of human develop­ ment.

David Macey (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1977), pp. 67, 68. 3i INTRODUCTION differences that limits their difference, this is a binding relation that intensifies and mobilizes differences, continually discharg­ ing and recharging differences. It is an ongoing process of differing rather than a structure that contains or limits dif­ ferences. The effect of such a process on the relation of the narrative is, as I suggested earlier, various kinds of redundancy: the same things seem to happen repeatedly, as differences are discharged without making a determinant difference.

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