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Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Thesis: Campus only access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts




This paper will compare Eliot's treatment of empathy in three of her novels from different stages in her career: The mill on the floss (1860), Romola (1862-62), and Middlemarch (1871-2). I will focus specifically on the progression of empathy as it affects Eliot's three female protagonists, Maggie Tulliver, Romola de' Bardi, and Dorothea Brooke, who all strive to exert agency within a society constrained by an oppressive gender dynamic that limits women's power. I will also connect the characters' empathy in each novel to Eliot's narrative empathy, or the way she attempts to evoke readers' empathy for her characters.

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