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5 - ‘Men Have Died of Love’

George Moore

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 March 2023

Sarah Green
Affiliation:
University of Oxford
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Summary

George Moore spent a large portion of his career writing joyously and explicitly about sex. Sex meant everything to Moore, and he occasionally mused that it was a ‘fluid’ or ‘rhythm’ that connected and vitalized all things in the world. But at the end of his three-volume autobiography Hail and Farewell (1911–14) he not only declared the onset of age-related sexual impotence, but also claimed that it was this that was finally going to make him a great artist. His newly imposed continence was going to make him intellectually and artistically strong and would give him the authority and charisma of a prophet. He had said similar things elsewhere, and his descriptions of the dangers of excessive sexuality closely follow those of Victorian medical texts. This chapter teases out this line of thinking in Moore’s writing about art and artists, and particularly his connection of this potently continent art with Walter Pater. The chapter shows how different sexual ideas can exist side by side in the work of a single person or even a single text, and how productive continence can often be found in surprising places.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2023

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  • ‘Men Have Died of Love’
  • Sarah Green, University of Oxford
  • Book: Sexual Restraint and Aesthetic Experience in Victorian Literary Decadence
  • Online publication: 02 March 2023
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108917490.006
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  • ‘Men Have Died of Love’
  • Sarah Green, University of Oxford
  • Book: Sexual Restraint and Aesthetic Experience in Victorian Literary Decadence
  • Online publication: 02 March 2023
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108917490.006
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • ‘Men Have Died of Love’
  • Sarah Green, University of Oxford
  • Book: Sexual Restraint and Aesthetic Experience in Victorian Literary Decadence
  • Online publication: 02 March 2023
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108917490.006
Available formats
×