I sometimes tell students who study the Victorian novel with me that, from a certain nineteenth-century POV, I'm corrupting their minds. (Novels are bad for you, inspire dangerous cravings for "excitement," make it impossible to read boring works of theology, etc.) For some reason, the students usually appear unconcerned about this momentous statement. However, it's also clear that I may have delivered a deadly blow to my students' morals by asking them to read both Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights and her poetry:
ETA: The author is the Scottish moralist and critic Peter Bayne.
On exactly the same grounds, would we bid our readers avoid works of distempered excitement; even when such are of the highest excellence in their class, as those of Ellis Bell and Edgar Poe, we would deliberately sentence them to oblivion: their general effect is to produce a mental state alien to the calm energy and quiet homely feelings of real life, to make the soul the slave of stimulants, and these of the fiercest kind, and, whatever morbid irritability may for the time be fostered, to shrivel and dry up those sympathies which are the most tender, delicate, and precious. Works like those of Edgar Poe and this 'Wuthering Heights' must be plainly declared to blunt, to brutalise, and to enervate the mind. Of the poetry, also, of Ellis Bell, it must be said that it is not healthful; that its beauty is allied to that wild loveliness which may gleam on the hectic cheek, or move while it startles, as we listen to maniac ravings.