Popular Fiction Tropes in George Eliot’s Felix Holt: the Radical
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In line with recent critical approaches to George Eliot that increasingly question her reputation as a realist writer, the article seeks to analyse the plot and characterisation in George Eliot’s Felix Holt: The Radical (1866) with reference to popular (and especially sensational and melodramatic) tropes often found in fiction of the period. The article discusses such plot elements as the trial scene in which the heroine gives testimony in order to help the hero, the heroine’s renouncement of her fortune, and the figures of a fallen woman (treated as a cautionary example by the heroine) and of a mysterious suitor with a troubled past.
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