The lost worlds romance: from dawn till dusk

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Greenwood Press, Aug 1, 1992 - Literary Criticism - 164 pages
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During the first part of the nineteenth century, the Lost Worlds Romance, a new literary form, appeared in which an explorer, most often a scientist, made a voyage to what was then considered to be a remote part of the earth where he discovered a fantastic lost world. This book surveys the Lost Worlds Romance from its beginnings as it evolved from travel literature and utopian fiction to its eclipse when there were no more unexplored corners of the earth and it took to the stars, evolving into modern Science Fiction. Interestingly, these romances reflect the developing natural and social sciences of the times in which they were written. The themes of evolution, teleportation, human longevity, euthanasia, other dimensions, reincarnation, uses of radium, utopian and dystopian societies, among many others, play a prominent part in the discussion of these works. Darwin, Marx, and Freud are shown to have especially influenced the authors of these romances. The book also demonstrates that at a time when the sexual mores of mainline fiction were fairly repressed, writers of the Lost Worlds Romance were permitted much liberty with the erotic imagination. The treatment given to women in these romances is explored.

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Contents

What in the World?
1
Dawn
11
Haggards World of Love and Danger
29
Copyright

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About the author (1992)

ALLIENNE R. BECKER is a Professor in the Foreign Language Department at Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania where she teaches courses in Comparative Literature specializing in fantasy and speculative fiction.