Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Arthur Krystal, at the New Yorker, considers the history of duelling. Here's a book on the early history of dueling in England, and its table of contents and introduction can be found here (PDF). The bibliography in that book would be a good thing to consult if you're interested in pursuing questions about honor, civility and masculinity as they affect our reading of Richardson's novel; it will include a thorough account of primary sources on duelling from the period, though you can get a preliminary sense of that by doing a few keyword searches in ECCO. (Be wary, though, of using keywords to trawl through a database--you don't end up with a very good sense of proportion, i.e. which works are widely distributed and read, or broadly speaking influential, and which may have been obscure--it's always worth checking the authoritative scholarly sources on the topics. They are not always infallible, but at least they have been vetted by scholars in the field and academic publishers' review boards!)

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