By David Floyd
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Extra resources for Street Urchins, Sociopaths and Degenerates: Orphans of Late-Victorian and Edwardian Fiction
British orphans Holly and Leo, of Haggard’s She, are contrasted with the orphan indigene Ignosi, from King Solomon’s Mines, while Quatermain is assessed as an imperial paternal figure to whom Ignosi constantly defers. In addition, this chapter addresses the malleability, hybridity and Gothicity of Kipling’s Mowgli and Kim, and the manner in which these uncategorizable orphans morph contingent with the demands of their present conditions, transgressing social constructions, class and racial systems and even categories of species.
17 His regard for others oscillates from mannerly deference to contemptuous insults. In relation to the asylum attendants, Renfield is ‘usually respectable’ and ‘at times servile; but tonight . . he is quite haughty’; Dr Hennessey writes that the patient ‘is usually such a wellbehaved man . . 18 And, yet, his gentlemanly regard for Mina is nothing short of impeccable. When frustrated that he is denied leaving the asylum, Renfield’s response to ‘the old fool’ Van Helsing is an infantile ‘I wish you would take yourself and your idiotic brain theories somewhere else.
18 And, yet, his gentlemanly regard for Mina is nothing short of impeccable. When frustrated that he is denied leaving the asylum, Renfield’s response to ‘the old fool’ Van Helsing is an infantile ‘I wish you would take yourself and your idiotic brain theories somewhere else. 19 Stoker depicts Renfield in a manner that is disturbing on numerous levels. 20 It is perhaps due to this myopic treatment of Renfield that the patient’s inconsistent behaviours prove even more disarming. The variety of frameworks that result in a count who is at turns somewhat feminine, violently masculine, inherently evil 42 Renfield’s ‘Agonized Confusion’ and even pitiable does not exist in the depiction of Renfield.