George du Maurier: The Satirist of the Victorians

Overview

We have in the portfolio of du Maurier the epic of the drawing-room. Many of the Victorians, including the Queen, and Alfred Lord Tennyson, seem to have viewed life from the drawing-room window. They gazed straight across the room from the English hearthrug as from undoubtedly the greatest place on earth. They were probably right. But some of this confidence has gone. Actually in these days there are people who won't own up to having a drawing-room at all. If they have a room that could possibly answer to such a ...
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George Du Maurier, the Satirist of the Victorians

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Overview

We have in the portfolio of du Maurier the epic of the drawing-room. Many of the Victorians, including the Queen, and Alfred Lord Tennyson, seem to have viewed life from the drawing-room window. They gazed straight across the room from the English hearthrug as from undoubtedly the greatest place on earth. They were probably right. But some of this confidence has gone. Actually in these days there are people who won't own up to having a drawing-room at all. If they have a room that could possibly answer to such a description, they go out of their way to call it the library, though its only available printed matter is a Bradshaw; or the music-room, though the only music ever heard in it is when the piano is dusted.
In turning over the old volumes of Punch it is surprising how many of the points made by du Maurier in his drawings and in the legends beneath them still hold good. As a mere "joker" he was perhaps the least able of the Punch staff. His influence began when he started inventing imaginary conversations. In many cases these do not represent the discussion of topical subjects at all, but deal with social aberrations, dated only in the illustration by the costume of the time.
In these imaginary conversations he is already a novelist. They record the strokes of finesse and the subterfuges necessary to the attainment of the vain ambitions which are the preoccupation of human genius in superficial levels of Society in all ages. We realise the waste of energy and diplomacy expended to score small points in the social game. His art is a mirror to weed-like qualities of human nature which enjoy a spring-time with every generation. But it also provides a remarkable record of the effect of the sudden replacement of old by new ideals in the world which it depicted.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781482300321
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Publication date: 1/28/2013
  • Pages: 90
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.19 (d)

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