All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Daniel Siegel

Advisory Committee Members

Rebecca Bach

Leonard Grimes

William Hutchings

Document Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2018

Degree Name by School

Master of Arts (MA) College of Arts and Sciences

Abstract

Changes in technology in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries had a profound impact on the way lighting was manipulated in theatres. No longer a simple question of illuminating action, lighting became a dynamic and essential element of drama. As an enthusiast of theatre during this transition, a young Charles Dickens was influenced by the visual spectacle he saw in theatres, and that influence is evident in his early novels. Those narratives frequently employ specific descriptions of light and perspective, which are key components of Dickens’ unique and widely celebrated visual style. In the early novels explored here, we see how Dickens’ style reflects the interest of Victorian England in visual spectacle while simultaneously creating narratives that seem tailor-made for twentieth-century cinema.

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