Category Archives: critical debate

Ethics and Evolution: Tensions in Post-Darwinian Literature

In 1809, Jean Baptiste Lamarck’s mechanism for evolution proposed in his essay Zoological Philosophy, namely that the acquisitions and losses of an individual during its lifespan are passed onto its offspring, was roundly rejected by Lamarck’s contemporaries as biologically impossible, … Continue reading

Posted in 19th century, A.S. Byatt, Angels and Insects, Byatt, Charles Darwin, critical debate, Darwin, Environment, evolution, Great Chain of Being, Literature, Morpho Eugenia, paradigm shift, Romantic Natural History, Romantic science, Romanticism | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gulliver’s Irrationality

Readings of Gulliver’s Travels are diverse enough to have spawned histories on the critical debate itself. The work was an instant success; upon its anonymous publication in 1726, “it […] became the only subject of conversation; everybody wondered, everybody admired, … Continue reading

Posted in critical debate, Gulliver's Travels, hard vs. soft, Jonathan Swift, Literature, satire, Swift, tour of literary criticism | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment