Home WakeSpace Scholarship › Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Tom Taylor's Ticket-of-Leave Man: His Detective Model and Financial Commentary

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Item Files

Item Details

abstract
Because of their popular appeal, Victorian melodramas can reveal new aspects of nineteenth-century London culture. My investigation focuses on three tropes within The Ticket-of-Leave Man: the character of the detective, of the ticket-of-leave man (a paroled criminal), and Victorian finances within this 1863 melodrama by Tom Taylor. Taylor's ingenuity is revealed by comparing two main characters' dramatic persona and real-life counterparts as seen through opinions in contemporary periodicals. After investigating the relationship between these two figures, I argue that through his detective character Taylor offers a model of behavior for audience reaction to real-life ticket-of-leave men. The third theme, financial deception, is an unresolved subtext throughout the play. Critic Victor Emeljanow states that “"what differentiates Taylor...is his critical objectivity which distances his writing from the narrowing effects of engaged satire, reforming zeal, or moral fervor;”" because of this ability, Taylor, unlike many Victorian dramatists, “"was generally able to judge in advance the limits of his audience's tolerance”" (57). I argue that Taylor places financial questions subtly but consistently as secondary to the first two themes so as not to challenge “"his audience's tolerance.”" Thus, he quietly raised questions, which served as an understated marker of growing problems in Victorian London.
subject
Brierly
Hawkshaw
jail-bird
speculation
Tolles
contributor
Jones, Carolyn L. (author)
Jenkins, Melissa (committee chair)
DeShazer, Mary (committee member)
Holdridge, Jefferson (committee member)
date
2011-07-14T20:35:26Z (accessioned)
2013-07-14T08:30:11Z (available)
2011 (issued)
degree
English (discipline)
embargo
2013-07-14 (terms)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/33444 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
Tom Taylor's Ticket-of-Leave Man: His Detective Model and Financial Commentary
type
Thesis

Usage Statistics