Books and Movies Reviews

Article Review for Hope Leslie

Bell, Michael Davitt."History and Romance Convention in Catharine Sedgwick's Hope
Leslie."American Quarterly, Volume 22, Issue 2, Part I (Summer, 1970).213-221
Michael Davitt Bell is a renowned literary researcher whose scholarly work has been mostly focused on nineteenth-century American fiction.He received his BA in 1963, from Yale, and my Ph.D. in English, from Harvard, in 1969.He taught English at Princeton from 1968 to 1975, and later moved to Williams College, where he taught until his death in 1997.In his article, "History and Romance Convention in Catharine Sedgwick's Hope Leslie,"Bell approaches the novel from a historical perspective, examining Hope Leslie as pertaining to its historical accuracy, and how the style of the novel fits into the template of the "conventional American historical romancer" (221).He introduces the story through a brief yet thorough summary, in order to go into detailed analysis of the characters, their relationship to each other, and their historical significance.Bell states that, "Hope Leslie, in spite of the confusion of its plot can be quite instructive in showing in detail how, in America in the early 19th century, historical material became historical romance" (216).
Bell makes comparisons between Magawisca's self-sacrifice to save Everell with the story of Pocahontas and John Smith.He also relates the story of the Indian attack "to have been inspired by the account on the Deerfield Massacre in John Williams' The Redeemed Captive Returning to Zion" (217).Although these accounts are not identical to the actual historical occurrences, Bell maintains that they are very similar and most definitely based on these true stories.
He goes on to draw similarities of the character of Sir Philip Gardiner to an actual historical figure, Sir Christopher Gardiner.Although Se

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