The Last Man - download pdf or read online

The Last Man - download pdf or read online

By Mary Shelley

It's the twenty-first century, and England is a republic ruled by way of a ruling elite, one in every of whom, Adrian, Earl of Windsor, has brought a Cumbrain boy to the circle.

This outsider, Lionel Verney, narrates the tale, a story of advanced, tragic love, and of the slow extermination of the human race by way of plague.

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Extra resources for The Last Man

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Romanticism can be understood, in fact, as a discovery of the potentiality of darkness. For the Enlightenment, the sun had been the literal emblem of rationality and the power of thought; night, in contrast, meant fear, superstition and madness. But as Enlightenment met 2. By Candlelight 43 its Other, Romance, darkness became the site of imagination, mystery, release. And this cultural development alongside scientific progress would invest the forms of old lighting, which had made darkness real, with retrospective magic.

The words “suffering,” “tyranny,” and later, “affliction” are allowed into the text, and into her thoughts, only to be denied or passed over, yet they are strong words and register the depth of the misery the compensation seeks to hide. So that the room and its furnishings scarcely exist as an objective setting which she inhabits: instead this is a psychological “nest of comforts,” fabricated out of yearning for the warmth of family and maternal love. This is then, it might be argued, a kind of mise en scène, since “the decor itself becomes an actor,” the room introduced into the novel and later reintroduced, to instate Fanny as displaced and refugee person, whose transient accommodations are perpetually under siege.

Soon she is “obliged to overhear what Mrs. Elton and Jane were talking of” (though where she is sitting is unclear) and the same condensation into ridiculousness continues (“Delightful, charming, superior, first circles, spheres, lines, ranks, every thing”) until—a complete contrast—the narrative finally “tunes in” and gives Jane Fairfax’s pointed request to move as a full speech. Though Jane Austen is a novelist whose focus on the visible scene is limited, she is also a novelist who increasingly shows interest in the distinct phenomena of aural attentiveness.

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