|Brewer, Elizabeth. “Morris
and the ‘Kingsley Movement',” The Journal of the William Morris Society
Vol. IV, No. 2 (Summer 1980): 4-17.
Brewer examines the possible influence Kingsley’s works may have had
on Morris. She believes that it is very difficult to specify categorically
that there was a direct influence, though there are many instances where
the thought of both men overlapped. She discusses, among others, the attack
on celibacy and asceticism in The Saint’s Tragedy and Hypatia;
Kingsley’s stress on the importance of the environment in Yeast;
the socio-political ideas pervading Alton Locke; Kingsley’s belief
in the value of art, an awareness of one's heritage, and the pleasures
of rural life to the ordinary working man; the use of the dream device
in Alton Locke; the romance as well as the Norse element of Hypatia.
Tragedy, The; Hypatia;
Locke; Westward Ho!; Yeast;
and Political Views.
Coles, Nicholas. "Charles Kingsley," in Dictionary
of Literary Biography, Volume 32: Victorian Poets Before 1850.
Edited by William E. Fredeman (Detroit: Gale, 1984): 182-190.
In this DLB chapter Coles provides an overview of Kingsley’s
life interspersed with a review of his writings, particularly his poetry.
There is a bibliography of Kingsley’s own works together with a short secondary
bibliography. There are also several illustrations. Coles writes
that “Kingsley’s literary career was marked by oscillation among genres
rather than by steady development: his dominant themes, however, remained
constant. He was only occasionally a poet and, after a bout of experimentation,
worked most successfully in simple established forms. His longest-lasting
pieces were the lyrics which John Hullah set to music” (189).
Courtney, Janet E. “Charles Kingsley,” Fortnightly
Review Vol. 105 (Jan-June 1919): 949-957.
In the centenary year of Kingsley’s birth Courtney offers a brief general
outline of the author’s life and principal works. She praises Kingsley’s
historical novels for their readability though acknowledging the presence
of many didactic passages. She criticizes, however, the modern novels,
i.e. Yeast, Two Years Ago, and Alton Locke for their old-fashionedness.
Their chief merit lies in their treatment of social questions rather in
their literary skill. On the other hand, Courtney lauds the children’s
stories for their charm and ability to delight. Courtney also discusses
the somewhat overlooked study of St. Elizabeth of Hungary, The Saint’s
Tragedy (1848). Though stressing the great interest and attention
Kingsley paid to this early work, Courtney criticizes its pervasive didacticism.
“It is a sermon against monkishness and in praise of wedded love, more
interesting to read, no doubt, than Kingsley’s sermons strictly so-called,
but it does not differ from them essentially” (954).
Tragedy, The; Social and Political Novel.
Hawley, John C., S.J. “Newman
the Novelist,” America Vol. 163, No. 18 (Dec 8, 1990): 455-457.
Hawley contrasts the opinions of Kingsley and
Newman on marriage, sexuality, and celibacy especially as these are presented
in their literary works. "In Loss and Gain and Callista Newman
enshrined celibacy as a prophetic witness to the spiritual life.
Kingsley countered in his seven novels with his enshrinement of marriage
as the highest Christian vocation, and coupled his praise with portrayals
of celibate men and women who were fearful, untrustworthy and effeminate"
Tragedy, The; Sexuality;
Seaver, George. Charles
Kingsley: Poet (Folcroft Library Editions, 1973).
This is a short volume, about forty pages, examining Kingsley's poetry.
Seaver declares that his poetic output cannot be considered great either
for its output or for its quality. Still, he praises much of his
poetry and argues that "it has its own distinctive note: among the minor
poets of our language he stands high" (3-4). Seaver also lauds the
poetic nature of Kingsley's prose; much is "prose-poetry". In fact,
his quality as a poet may be especially seen in his pen-pictures of nature
and scenery in his Prose Idylls and in his novels. However,
Seaver concludes that the main interest will abide in Kingsley the man
rather than Kingsley the poet.
Rhythm; Saint's Tragedy, The.