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ENGL 4365: Victorian Literature

Books @ the Library

The Victorian Age in Literature

A fascinating survey of Victorian literature from one of England's greatest minds Dishing out his signature brand of harsh wit, G. K. Chesterton casts a critical eye on the poets and novelists that defined the Victorian age in English literature.

The Cambridge History of Victorian Literature

This collaborative History aims to become the standard work on Victorian literature for the twenty-first century. Well-known scholars introduce readers to their particular fields, discuss influential critical debates and offer illuminating contextual detail to situate authors and works in their wider cultural and historical contexts

Victorian Literature

An anthology of both familiar and previously unavailable primary texts that illuminate the world of nineteenth-century ideas. An expert team introduce and annotate a range of original social, cultural, political and historical documents necessary for contextualising key literary texts from the Victorian period.

Victorian Literature and Postcolonial Studies

This book surveys the impact of the British Empire on nineteenth-century British literature from a postcolonial perspective. It explains both pro-imperialist themes and attitudes in works by major Victorian authors, and also points of resistance to and criticisms of the Empire such as abolitionism, as well as the first stirrings of nationalism in India and elsewhere.

The Femme Fatale in Victorian Literature

Refuting one-dimensional characterization, this book argues that the femme fatale comes to represent the real-life struggles of the middle-class Victorian woman who overcomes major adversities such as poverty, abusive husbands, abandonment, single parenthood, limited job opportunities, the criminal underworld, and Victorian society's harsh invective against her.

Twenty-First Century Perspectives on Victorian Literature

Victorian literature's fascination with the past, its examination of social injustice, and its struggle to deal with the dichotomy between scientific discoveries and religious faith continue to fascinate scholars and contemporary readers.


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Hannah Menendez
NGL 223J (Library)

Guide to Victorian Literature

Welcome! This guide is intended to provide supplementary resources for your course. 

Below, you can find tips for searching for books and articles about Victorian literature. Navigate to the lefthand side tabs to find resources for your Museum Project. For more resources and research tips for literature studies, visit the Literature and Literary Criticism Research Guide

Need help? Contact your librarian, Hannah Menendez, at


Helpful databases for Victorian literature studies:

Topic Subject Terms

Subject terms are designated classification terms used by the Library of Congress classification system, which is what the SHSU library uses to organize its catalog. Subject terms are particularly useful when using the "Books & Media" tab to look for books in the catalog. A search bar just for the catalog is embedded below: used the dropdown menu to select "Subject" to use subject terms.

Here are some potentially useful subject terms* for each of the topics for the Museum Project:

Cholera Epidemics

Main term: Cholera--Great Britain--History--19th century

Others: Cholera--History--19th century

19th-Century Medicine

Main term: Literature and medicine--Great Britain--History--19th century

Others: Literature and science--Great Britain--History--19th century

Gypsies (Roma/Romanies)

Main Term: Romanies--Great Britain

Others: Romanies in literature


Main Term: Motherhood in literature

Others: Mothers in literature


West Indies & Colonialism

Main term: Great Britain--Colonies--America--History

Others: West Indies, British--History


New Woman and the Cult of Domesticity

Main term: Domestic fiction, English--History and criticism

Others: Women in literature--Great Britain--History--19th century

domestic relations in literature--Great Britain--19th century


Main term: Alcoholism in literature

alcoholism--History--Great Britain

Sex and Pornography

Main term: Sex in literature--Great Britain--19th century

Others: pornography--Great Britain--19th century


history and criticism--Great Britain--19th century

*Note: The dashes denote terms that can be searched separately. For instance "alcoholism in literature" is a single subject term, but "Great Britain--19th century" are two separate terms. If you aren't getting many results, try using fewer terms. 




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