Seductive Strategies in the Novels of Anthony Trollope (1815-1882)

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Explores the notion of seduction in all of Anthony Trollope’s 47 novels, beginning with a preliminary sturdy of seductresses in Barchester Towers, The Eustace Diamonds and The American Senator. The first part deals with the various weapons and strategies which Trollopian characters resort to in order to fascinate their victims.


“No Victorian novelist wrote so many memorable novels as did Anthony Trollope. Dr. Laurent Bury, in his richly informed and engagingly written book, indicates why this is so…..As a splendid example of traditional scholarship, [this work] reflects its author’s extensive knowledge of, and his affection for, Trollope’s entire fictional oeuvre; and it should inspire readers to seeks out the various Trollope titles.” – (From the Commendatory Preface) Dr. Donald Stone, Queen’s College, City University of New York

“Dr. Bury’s book on Anthony Trollope is one of the rare comprehensive studies of the Victorian novelist, for it encompasses the whole bulk of his 47 novels, showing their unity and diversity. It explores the notion of seduction, first of the thematic level, but also as a key to his literary creation…..Because he wants to appear as a gentleman, Trollope cannot resort to the usual arms of the active seducer, but as a successful novelist, he has to please, if not to enchant, his readers. Dr. Bury discusses this interesting paradox together with the various aspects of seduction in Trollope’s novels in a sober but elegant style, nurtured by a rich literary and artistic culture. His in-depth study brilliantly reveals an essential theme of Trollope’s novels and makes a good case for considering Trollope as a clever novelist who conceals his successful artistry beneath his professions of artlessness. Altogether, this is one of the best introductions to Anthony Trollope.” – Professor Alain Jumeau, University of Paris-Sorbonne

“Combining the best of both worlds – British scholarship and French theory -, Dr. Bury’s engaging study aims at breaking the secret of Trollope’s enduring appeal…..Dr. Bury does not attempt to turn either Trollope or his characters into sex-driven Don Juans, but he certainly succeeds in restoring the generally underplayed Byronic vein of Trollope’s inspiration… is the literariness of Trollope which constitute the work’s strongest contribution. Besides assessing the novelist’s persuasive strategies and teasing ways, Laurent Bury uncovers the full range of Trollope’s artistic ambitions….But the art of seduction is not infallible, and never lasts forever: towards the end of his life, Trollope fell out of favor – only to re-emerge as an all time favorite. It is for those ever faithful Trollope readers, old and new, that Dr. Bury has composed this enticing essay.” –Professor Marc Porée, Institut Du Monde Anglophone

Table of Contents

1. On sundry seductresses
2. The art of charming the senses
3. Refinement and barbarity
4. Angels and demons
5. Social seduction
6. The writer as seducer: first attempts
7. To please or not to please
8. Anti-seduction and self-seduction
Names Cited

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