“One of the most stimulating studies of Dickens to have appeared in recent years.” —New York Times
Myron Magnet’s groundbreaking study of Charles Dickens’s early novels shows that the liberal reformism for which Dickens is so well known rested on a surprisingly traditional view of society.
Magnet writes, “The four great but relatively neglected works I discuss in Dickens and the Social Order . . . add up to what for another writer would constitute a magnificent life’s work in itself, a tour de force that is like a university education in psychology, political theory, comparative political science, cultural anthropology, sociology, history, philosophy, and more—all transfigured and illuminated by the genius of the writer rightly said to be Inimitable, so that the reader can hardly believe that anything so full of pleasure can also be so full of wisdom.”
What They're Saying...
"Perhaps [Magnet] will consider writing a sequel; even if it turned out to be only half as good as Dickens and the Social Order, it would be very well worth reading.”
— New York Times
"A book that should significantly alter our general understanding of Dickens."
"Magnet has rescued Dickens from his rosier-cheeked admirers and given us another, more robust Dickens—Dickens the advocate of law and order, the partisan of legitimate authority, the defender of customs and mannerly behavior. Three cheers to Myron Magnet for this literary and moral tour de force. And three cheers to ISI for bringing this forgotten masterpiece back to the public’s attention."
— Roger Kimball, The New Criterion
"An important corrective to some fairly shallow notions that have been popular in the past."
— David Parker, Curator, The Dickens House
"Seldom have [critics] given readers a glimpse of the Dickens with whom Myron Magnet deals in his study of Britain’s pre-eminent fictionist."
— The American Conservative