The Gothic Element in the Novels of Charles Brockden Brown Page: 29
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shall ever be exactly th© same mm that ha was
before.* *And yet, though woven of th® most
amazing and horrible and uncommon of materials,
the no?el must move at every point within th# law®
and established course of nature as she operate®
in th© planet wo inhabit,* It was his task aa a
novelist, he contended, Ho Mix human feelings and
passions with incredible situation, and thus render
them impressive and interesting.1
The style of Godwin — headlong, intense —
had undoubtedly its effect upon Brown, as did also
Godwin*s humanitarian objectives and hi® obvious
moralizing, fleland is spiced thickly with
apothegms and axioms of the Godwin variety, • . .
Moreover, the rough sketch of Carwin presented la
th® novel is of Caleb Williams texture* Despite
seeming monstrous' crimes,' Car win is defended* He
is *an unfortunate man,* a thing to be pitied, a
victim in the hands of an unscrupulous master who
attempts to make him his oat* s-paw, and he is also,
like Williams, the victim of an uncontrollable
"He /Charles Brockden BrownJ was the Godwin of America,"
says John Meal in his contributions to Blackwood*s Magazine,
An article In the Restrospeotive Review said of Brown
and Godwin: "Charles Brockden Brown was the first writer of
prose fiction of which America could boast . . . He grounded
himself upon the manner of Godwin . . .w^
In brockden Brown and the Novel," William Barton Blake
Brown*s place with reference to novelists who
loomed large on the contemporary literature stage
%1 eland, pp. xrxv, xxxvi.
ohn Neal, American Writers, p. 65.
^William B. Cairns, British Criticisms of American
Writings, 1615-1833. p. 1977^
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Cannon, Willie Jim. The Gothic Element in the Novels of Charles Brockden Brown, thesis, 1950; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc130235/m1/32/: accessed March 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .