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Realizing CapitalFinancial and Psychic Economies in Victorian Form$
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Anna Kornbluh

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780823254972

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823254972.001.0001

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. “Money Expects Money”

. “Money Expects Money”

Satiric Credit in The Way We Live Now

(p.89) 4. “Money Expects Money”
Realizing Capital

Anna Kornbluh

Fordham University Press

Anthony Trollope, too, casts suspicion on the ethical implications of the psychic economy metaphor eloquently voiced by Dickens and Eliot. His financial roman-a-clef illustrates the centrality of this idea to the speculative credit economy. This chapter considers the remarkable fact that this novel, widely celebrated as the most vitriolic satire composed in the Victorian period, actually abandons its satire for its last 200 pages. It argues that the satire implodes because a satire of finance is topologically impossible: satiric hyperbole circulates exaggerated figurative language just like fictitious capital. The modal conversion stemming from this hypocritical collusion compels Trollope to put down “the whip of the satirist,” and results in a conventionally realist focus on interiority and intimacy as putatively less hyperbolic subjects of narration. In the process, the novel performs that recursive grounding of the financial economy in the inner economy of the psychological individual which the book argues absorbs Victorian thinkers, a move problematized by the many ironies at work in the last quarter of the text.

Keywords:   Satire, Finance, Fictitious capital, Credit, Hyperbole, Interiority, Trollope, speculation

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