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Under America's sign: two nineteenth-century British readings

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Rather than emphasizing British anti-Americanism during the nineteenth century, Under America's sign: two nineteenth-century British readings examines the ways in which British attitudes to America and its culture reflect ambivalence about Britain's own place in the modern world. In order to illustrate how British identities were shaped in exchanges with America, the article concentrates on two texts: Charles Dickens's American Notes for General Circulation (1842) and Charles Wentworth Dilke's Greater Britain (1868). America is thus seen as a space marked not by otherness or sheer difference, but by the differences of proximity, in-between-ness, or kinship.

Keywords: America; Britain; Victorian; culture; difference; modern

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Vanderbilt University.

Publication date: December 1, 2005

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  • The European Journal of American Culture (EJAC) is an academic, refereed journal for scholars, academics and students from many disciplines with a common involvement in the interdisciplinary study of America and American culture, drawing on a variety of approaches and encompassing the whole evolution of the country.
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