'Long grief, dark melancholy, hopeless natural love': Clarissa, Cheyne and narratives of body and soul.

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Abstract

The paper deals with Clarissa's wasting combination of love and religious melancholy, and the way in which ailments of the mind have an immediate effect on the body in this period. George Cheyne's theories of melancholy and hypochondria explain at least some of the mechanisms by which the eighteenth century understood this phenomenon. 'Clarissa' is an important text because it influenced so many later representations of melancholy, especially as it is gendered feminine in Richardson's newly feminised discourse of sensibility.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-112
JournalGesnerus
Volume63
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2006

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