"Rank and Power": Authorship, the Diary, and the Law in Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White
MetadataShow full item record
Addressing a gap in current criticism, this thesis explores the notion of authorship and its authority in Wilkie Collins’s The Woman in White. There are notable parallels between Collins’s unique interest in, and vexation with, nineteenth-century British copyright law (and indeed, other aspects of British law) and his innovative use of the diary as narrative form. In this context, Count Fosco’s penetration of Marian Halcombe’s diary, which forms part of The Woman in White, can be read symbolically as an attempt to wrest control from its author. The diary, then, is posited as much more than a gendered, private, and introspective text: instead, it becomes a locus for the complexity and precariousness of Victorian authorship.