“The Lady is Ugly!”: The Imposition of Gender Binaries Upon Marian Halcombe

Marian Halcombe is a complex woman. Unlike many other female characters, both within and outside Victorian fiction, she stands outside the gender binary. She is often attributed male characteristics, both in mind and appearance. Her appearance is complex, juxtaposing her feminine and sexualized body with her masculine and ‘ugly’ face: The lady is dark. […] The lady is young. […] The lady is ugly! Never has the old conventional maxim, that Nature cannot err, more flatly contradicted – never was

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