Description: This work argues that the dynamics of the oral and of the literate consciousness play a vital role in the characterization of Bleak House. Through an application of Walter Ong's synthesis of orality/literacy research, Krook's residual orality is seen to play a greater role in his characterization than his more frequently discussed spontaneous combustion. Also, the role orality and literacy plays in understanding Dickens's satire of "philanthropic shams" is analyzed. This study concludes that an awareness of orality and literacy gives the reader of Bleak House a consistent framework for evaluating the moral quality of its characters and for understanding the broader social message underlying Dickens's topical satire.
Date: May 1988
Creator: Nelms, Jeffrey Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries