Inherited Emotions: George Eliot and the Politics of Heirlooms
Osborne, Katherine Dunagan
In this essay I explore the ways in which several heirlooms constitute
Dorothea Brooke’s and Gwendolen Harleth’s subjectivities
in unexpected ways in Eliot’s Middlemarch (1871–72)
and Daniel Deronda (1876), respectively. Although in the nineteenth
century heirlooms were believed to gesture to generations
past and offer promise for future descendents, George
Eliot reconfigures their significance on an individual level: they
are important not as symbols of timeless family traditions but,
rather, as emotional epicenters or psychic landmarks in Dorothea
Brooke’s and Gwendolen Harleth’s interiorities.
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Katherine Dunagan Osborne, “Inherited Emotions: George Eliot and the Politics of Heirlooms,” George Eliot Scholars, accessed August 5, 2021, https://georgeeliotscholars.org/items/show/369.