It is in "Bleak House" that Dickens the realist and Dickens the modernist are often thought to meet. In the two intertwined but separate narratives, one from a woman's perspective and the other forming, arguably, the first detective novel in English, Dickens confronts modern England and modernity itself. The essays collected in this "New Casebook" embody some of the approaches to Dickens, using deconstructive, feminist, Marxist and post-structuralist methods. The introduction places the various essays in the context of current critical thinking, whilst itself suggesting an alternative viewpoint and the potential direction of future analysis of this text.
JEREMY TAMBLING teaches Comparative Literature at the University of Hong Kong and, amongst other books, is author of Dickens, Violence and the Modern State (also published by Macmillan) and is editor of David Copperfield for Penguin Classics. He edited E.M.Forster in the New Casebook series.