11) Ever interested in challenging the boundaries of convention, Stoddard breaks down these boundaries as well: in "Collected by a Valetudinarian
," she explores the possibilities of a non-proprietary authorship that can lead to new artist/audience relations; she attenuates the terrors of the marketplace by giving it a new, familial form.
And at the pace I can manage these days, could there be a better companion than a valetudinarian
Border terrier or an ailing toddler?
The main letter writers-and the only ones to describe Harrogate--in Humphry Clinker are Matthew Bramble, a tetchy but generous-hearted valetudinarian
who addresses his letters to his doctor, and his young nephew, Jery Melford, whose correspondent is a fellow student at Oxford.
At a deeper level, finally--drawing on diaries, private correspondence, and contemporary reminiscences and arranging her exposition in diachronic sections ("Scenes from Family Life," "The Victorian," "Pre-Raphaelite," "Artist," "Man of Letters," "Marriage," "Radicals," "The Patient," and "Coda")--Thirlwell has provided readers with an almost Chekhovian account of the passionate bonds which united "William and Lucy," as well as the mingled idealism and insecurity of Lucy Rossetti's temperament in her last valetudinarian
But any valetudinarian
who was actually born in Leamington (and there were probably precious few of those) would have told you how rapidly this transformation had taken place.
Proust as fastidious valetudinarian
and his Narrator's excessively nervous disposition have fascinated biographers and critical commentators from the very beginning.
a greater Valetudinarian
than any I had ever met with, even in her own Sex, and subject to such Momentary Consumptions, that in the twinkling of an Eye, she would fall away from the most florid Complexion, and the most healthful State of Body, and wither into a Skeleton.
Similarly, in "Collected by a Valetudinarian
," a woman who has chosen solitude over marriage exclaims, when her suitor abandons hope, "he has gone.
Furthermore, he "could not meet [his daughter] in conversation, rational or playful" and has been "a valetudinarian
all his life, without activity of mind or body" (7).
His letters to family members were more dutiful, and there was a certain ambivalence in his remarks about his valetudinarian
wife: "I feel every time she works that she has real genius .
Austen's lively account of the annual ball at Kempshott Park would have been the valetudinarian
, Cher's single parent father suffers from serial failed marriages and work-a-holism, and may thus be considered comparably dysfuntional.