Sin and Sensation
Sensation fiction, a loose sub-genre of the British novel, flourished
from the 1860s onwards. With plots featuring scandalous topics such as
divorce, bigamy, rape, illegitimacy, crime and insanity, the genre frequently
took its inspiration from the headlines of tabloid journalism. The sensation
genre alarmed British authorities, especially clergy, who preached against
it as "one of the abominations of the age."
Sensation novels catered to a mass reading audience,
and they were hugely successful. One of the most famous progenitors of
the genre, Mary Elizabeth Braddons Lady Audleys Secret,
sold out eight editions between October and December 1862.
to New Women
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