chapter  7
26 Pages

Sustaining and Rewriting Cultural Values

Just as Martineau’s and Eliot’s approach to the task of cultural translation in their travel writing was considerably impacted by their ability to translate texts, Eliot’s and Brontë’s fictional writings on the foreign place are inflected with their translational activities. For example, Eliot’s extensive primary research in Italy culminates in her careful construction of fifteenth-century Florence in Romola, while Brontë’s Belgian novels Villette and The Professor can be related to the travel narrative in her portrayal of her experiences in Belgium through the characters of Lucy Snowe and William Crimsworth. These fictional narratives further explore the way their creators move between physical and ideological spaces to rewrite the roles made available to them within gendered Victorian structures.