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Title: Great Expectations, "great exhibitions": illusioni e inganni nella Londra vittoriana
Authors: Squeo, Alessandra
Keywords: London in "Great Expectations"London between pretence and realityLondon in the 19th-Century
Issue Date: 2003
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Alessandra Squeo "Great Expectations, "great exhibitions": illusioni e inganni nella Londra vittoriana", in: Prospero, X (2003), pp. 105-130
Series/Report no.: Prospero. Rivista di culture anglo-germaniche
X (2003)
The Crystal Palace, built by the architect Joseph Paxton to host the "Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nation", was inaugurated on May 1st 1851 at the presence of Queen Victoria and the court. It was a great show, portraying the greatness of the British Empire. The "Great Exhibition" was an incredible example of the spectacularisation of the urban space that had already started at the beginning of the 19th Century. The magnificent and impressive image of the metropolis conveyed a clear ideological message, in a moment where showcases of national pride were increasing because of the difficult times and the political struggles happening in the country.
In 1861, Dickens draws his own portrait of London in the novel "Great Expectations" against that same background: a city plagued by conflicts between pretence and reality, truth and lies. In "Great Expectations", London becomes a ‘text’, that is to say a woven fabric, according to the Latin etymology, a plot to be disentangled, and opens itself to continually new and different interpretations.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1123-2684
Appears in Collections:2003 / 10 Prospero. Rivista di culture anglo-germaniche

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