At birth Edmund Gosse was dedicated to "the service of the lord". His parents were Plymouth Brethren. After his mother's death Gosse was brought up in stifling isolation by his father, a marine biologist, whose faith overcame his reason when confronted by Darwin's theory of evolution. "Father and Son" is the record of Gosse's struggle to "fashion his inner life for himself" - a record of whose full and subversive implications the author was unaware, as Peter Abbs notes in his introduction.
Sir Edmund William Gosse (1849 - 1928) was an English poet, author and critic. He was brought up in a small Protestant sect, the Plymouth Brethren, but broke away sharply from that faith. His account of his childhood in the book Father and Son has been described as the first psychological biography.