Charles Darnay Essay

Evremonde, for the rape of her sister, the deaths of that sister and her brother-in-law, and the imprisonment of Dr.

Manette, to silence his knowledge of the Marquis’s crimes.

What difference would it make if Sydney Carton were queer?

Literary critics have not proposed Carton as one of Dickens’s queer characters and film critics have assumed that Coleman played Carton straight.

Clearly, queering Carton troubles the plot of , but Carton is trouble for straight readings, as well. Dickens raises more questions with Carton than his novel is able to resolve.

But this is just to say that Carton preeminently demonstrates that Victorian masculinities are fraught with contradictions and tensions, becoming more strained as they become more important to connecting the many threads of liberal democratic social fabric.

That conversation sheds light on and its hero, Sydney Carton, to elaborate a queer historical narrative jurisprudence.

The conclusions I draw from a queer reading of Carton are these: (1) Carton represents Victorians’ anxious recognition of patriarchy’s dependence upon sexual outlaws.

Among the most beloved heroes of Victorian fiction, Sydney Carton is likely the most heroic lawyer in all of English literature, rivaling Shakespeare’s Portia, who, after all, merely passes as a man of law.

Motivated by his love of Lucie Manette, Carton goes to the guillotine in place of her husband, a sacrifice extraordinary in Victorian fiction and made iconic by Ronald Coleman’s portrayal of Carton in the 1935 film adaptation of.


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