By Siobhan Carroll
Planetary areas comparable to the poles, the oceans, the ambience, and subterranean areas captured the British imperial mind's eye. Intangible, inhospitable, or inaccessible, those clean spaces—what Siobhan Carroll calls "atopias"—existed past the limits of identified and inhabited locations. The eighteenth century conceived of those geographic outliers because the normal limits of imperial enlargement, yet medical and naval advances within the 19th century created new chances to grasp and keep an eye on them. This improvement preoccupied British authors, who have been familiar with seeing atopic areas as otherworldly marvels in fantastical stories. areas that an empire couldn't colonize have been areas that literature could declare, as literary representations of atopias got here to mirror their authors' attitudes towards the expansion of the British Empire in addition to the half they observed literature enjoying in that expansion.
Siobhan Carroll interrogates the position those clean areas performed within the building of British id in the course of an period of unsettling worldwide circulations. analyzing the poetry of Samuel T. Coleridge and George Gordon Byron and the prose of Sophia Lee, Mary Shelley, and Charles Dickens, in addition to newspaper bills and voyage narratives, she lines the methods Romantic and Victorian writers reconceptualized atopias as threatening or, from time to time, weak. those textual explorations of the earth's maximum reaches and mystery depths make clear chronic elements of the British international and environmental mind's eye that linger within the twenty-first century.
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Extra info for An Empire of Air and Water: Uncolonizable Space in the British Imagination, 1750-1850
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An Empire of Air and Water: Uncolonizable Space in the British Imagination, 1750-1850 by Siobhan Carroll