Dickens as Prisoner in American Prisons: The Depiction of Prisons in American Notes

Ghada S. Sasa


When Charles Dickens travelled to the United States in 1842, he did not realize that his privacy and personal space will be intruded upon by the American public. Therefore, upon visiting various prisons while touring the United States, he realized a connection, an unspeakable bond between him and the locked up prisoners. While the prisoners are locked up within their cells, Dickens feels locked up and imprisoned with no sense of individuality and personal space. This study traces the connection between Dickens and the prisoners.


Charles Dickens; Imprisonment; Prisons; Loss of privacy; Loss of individuality; Personal space

Full Text:



Ackroyd, P. (1990). Dickens. New York: Harper Collins.

Carlson, L. (1997). Categorizing American notes: Dickens as new journalist. Nineteenth Century Prose, 23, 25-33.

Claybaugh, A. (2006). Toward a new transatlanticism: Dickens in the United States. Victorian Studies, 48, 439-460.

Dickens, C. (1874). American notes for general circulation and pictures from Italy. London: Chapman and Hall.

Grass, S. (2000). Narrating the cell: Dickens on the American prisons. Journal of English and Germanic Philology, 99, 50-70.

House, M., Storey, G., & Tillotson, K. (Eds.). (1965). The letters of Charles Dickens. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

John, J. (2007). A body without a head: The idea of mass culture in Dickens’s American Notes (1842). Journal of Victorian Culture, 12, 173-202.

Kipling, R. (1930). American notes. New York: Standard Book Co.

Meckier, J. (1984). Dickens discovers America, Dickens discovers Dickens: The first visit reconsidered. The Modern Language Review, 79, 267-277.

Moynahan, J. M., & Stewart, E. K. (1980). The American jail: Its development and growth. Chicago: Nelson-Hall.

Semple, J. (1993). Bentham’s prison: A study of the Panoptican penitentiary. New York: Oxford University Press.

Tambling, J. (2001). Lost in the American city: Dickens, James, and Kafka. New York: Palgrave.

Trollope, A. (1862). North America. London: Chapman and Hall.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/n


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c)

Share us to:   


Online Submissionhttp://cscanada.org/index.php/sll/submission/wizard


How to do online submission to another Journal?

If you have already registered in Journal A, then how can you submit another article to Journal B? It takes two steps to make it happen:

1. Register yourself in Journal B as an Author

Find the journal you want to submit to in CATEGORIES, click on “VIEW JOURNAL”, “Online Submissions”, “GO TO LOGIN” and “Edit My Profile”. Check “Author” on the “Edit Profile” page, then “Save”.

2. Submission

Go to “User Home”, and click on “Author” under the name of Journal B. You may start a New Submission by clicking on “CLICK HERE”.

We only use three mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases: caooc@hotmail.com; sll@cscanada.net; sll@cscanada.org

 Articles published in Studies in Literature and Language are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY).


Address: 1055 Rue Lucien-L'Allier, Unit #772, Montreal, QC H3G 3C4, Canada.
Telephone: 1-514-558 6138 
Website: Http://www.cscanada.net; Http://www.cscanada.org 
E-mailoffice@cscanada.net; office@cscanada.org; caooc@hotmail.com

Copyright © 2010 Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture