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'The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck: A Romance' is an 1830 historical novel by Mary Shelley about the life of Perkin Warbeck.
Plot and themes
In this novel, Mary Shelley returned to 'The Last Man's message that an idealistic political system is impossible without an improvement in human nature.Frank, "'Perkin Warbeck'". This historical novel, influenced by those of Sir Walter Scott,Spark, 201; Lynch, 135-41. Mary Shelley consulted Scott while writing the book. fictionalises the exploits of Perkin Warbeck, a pretender to the throne of King Henry VII who claimed to be Richard, Duke of York, the second son of King Edward IV. Shelley believed that Warbeck really was Richard and had escaped from the Tower of London."It is not singular that I should entertain a belief that Perkin was, in reality, the lost Duke of York ... no person who has at all studied the subject but arrives at the same conclusion." Mary Shelley, Preface to 'Perkin Warbeck', vivii, quoted in Bunnell, 131. She endows his character with elements of Percy Shelley, portraying him sympathetically as "an angelic essence, incapable of wound", who is led by his sensibility onto the political stage.Bunnell, 132; Brewer, "'Perkin Warbeck'". She seems to have identified herself with Richard's wife, Lady Katherine Gordon, who survives after her husband's death by compromising with his political enemies.Wake, 24647; Brewer, "'Perkin Warbeck'". Lady Gordon stands for the values of friendship, domesticity and equality; through her, Mary Shelley offers a female alternative to the masculine power politics that destroy Richard, as well as the typical historical narrative which only relates those events.Bunnell, 132; Lynch, 143-44.
*Bennett, Betty T. "The Political Philosophy of Mary Shelley's Historical novels: 'Valperga' and 'Perkin Warbeck'". 'The Evidence of the Imagination'. Eds. Donald H. Reiman, Michael C. Jaye, and Betty T. Bennett. New York: New York University Press, 1978.
*Brewer, William D. "[http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3708/is_199904/ai_n8844841/pg_1 William Godwin, Chivalry, and Mary Shelley's 'The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck']". 'Papers on Language and Literature' 35.2 (Spring 1999): 187-205. Rpt. on bnet.com. Retrieved on 20 February 2008.
*Bunnell, Charlene E. '"All the World's a Stage": Dramatic Sensibility in Mary Shelley's Novels.' New York: Routledge, 2002. ISBN 0-415-93863-5.
*Garbin, Lidia. "Mary Shelley and Walter Scott: 'The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck' and the Historical Novel". 'Mary Shelley's Fiction: From Frankenstein to Falkner'. Eds. Michael Eberle-Sinatra and Nora Crook. New York: Macmillan; St. Martin's, 2000.
*Hopkins, Lisa. "The Self and the Monstrous". 'Iconoclastic Departures: Mary Shelley after "Frankenstein": Essays in Honor of the Bicentenary of Mary Shelley's Birth'. Eds. Syndy M. Conger, Frederick S. Frank, and Gregory O'Dea. Madison, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1997.
*Lynch, Deidre. "Historical novelist". 'The Cambridge Companion to Mary Shelley'. Ed. Esther Schor. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003. ISBN 0-521-00770-4.
*Sites, Melissa. "Chivalry and Utopian Domesticity in Mary Shelley's 'The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck'". 'European Romantic Review' 16.5 (2005): 525-43.
*Spark, Muriel. 'Mary Shelley'. London: Cardinal, 1987. ISBN 0-7474-0318-X.
*Wake, Ann M Frank. "Women in the Active Voice: Recovering Female History in Mary Shelley's 'Valperga' and 'Perkin Warbeck'". 'Iconoclastic Departures: Mary Shelley after "Frankenstein". Essays in Honor of the Bicentenary of Mary Shelley's Birth.' Ed. Syndy M. Conger, Frederick S. Frank, and Gregory O'Dea. Madison, NJ: Farleigh Dickinson University Press, 1997. ISBN 0-8386-3684-5.
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