Charlotte Brontë: Villette

(1918 words)
  • Judy Giles (University College of Ripon and York St John)

Villette, first published in 1853, was Charlotte Brontë’s last novel. It was also the only novel to be published under her own name and not that of Currer Bell. It differs in location from her previous fictions, being set in Belgium rather than her native Yorkshire but its themes are continued from her earlier works - unrequited love, the plight of the single woman, education, and the tension between duty and desire. Of all her novels Villette proved the hardest to write. Wracked with numerous debilitating illnesses, grieving still for Emily and Anne, and lonelier than ever, Charlotte struggled with the first two volumes of the novel. However, the approbation of her publisher, George Smith, on reading the initial …

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Giles, Judy. "Villette". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 13 August 2004
[, accessed 01 October 2016.]

Related Groups

  1. Gothic, Grotesque & Supernatural Fiction