The Civil War in America was responsible for bringing about a change in the American culture. The impact of the Victorian culture was evident after the Civil War.
Even seemingly unshakeable axioms are prone to reassessment by historians, and Victorianism is no exception. Even the very period of Victorianism itself stands challenged: Yet critics shadowed the entire period in question, and the negative connotations were fired dramatically forward soon after the period ended, notably with Lytton Strachey 's — mocking attack Eminent Victorians Moralizing, prudish, repressed and repressiveand old-fashioned rather than traditional —each of these notions captures what Victorianism has meant to later generations.
Early Victorianism The early Victorian years witnessed the emergence of a cluster of values and beliefs that represented the central ideas of Victorianism. These years are associated with developments in governance, economic and social life, science, and learning that capture the essential features of Victorianism.
In governance, one can look to the reforms which, if not immediately democratic, changed the structure of parliament, ushering in a tradition of evolutionary change with major Reforms Acts in, and the expansion of local, middle-class political power with the Municipal Corporations Act In economic life, the hard-nosed essentials of political economy and utilitarianism reached a high point prior to the s.
Associated with such notable names as Jeremy Bentham —James Mill —and David Ricardo —and later refined and developed by luminaries such as John Stuart Mill —political economy helped to shape the policy conditions for the reform of the Elizabethan Poor Law in the form of the Poor Law Amendment Act,and the ideology of self-help which, for a while, attained the status of mantra.
By the time Samuel Smiles — penned the popularized guide to the joys of this creed Self Help,the concept had already begun to be pushed to one side by a creeping state and the tendency of the working class to collectivize in the face of demands for Smilesian individualism: Values and Beliefs In religion, Victorianism balanced the ancient regime Anglicanism of the Church of England with a growing pluralism through alternative Christianities, new faiths, and the toleration of unbelief.
The backdrop to this was a crisis of faith for Anglicans, dating to the early Victorian years, when the Church of England was rocked by fierce debates about Tractarianism, "Romish" rituals, and the intellectual contribution of the Oxford movement.
At a more prosaic level, the Religious Census of revealed a general weakening of popular interest in the established church and many dissenting faiths, whilst Roman Catholicism prospered through Irish migration. Victorianism may be equated with spiritual piety and Christian morality, but alternative and opposite forces also had some importance.
Agnosticism, advocated most notably by Thomas H. Huxley —offered, by the s, an alternative to faith in the attempt to answer profound questions about the nature of being. Victorianism came to be associated with patriarchical social values, stressing the importance of family and an image of motherhood captured well in Alfred Lord Tennyson's — poem, The Princess Man for the field and woman for the hearth; for the sword, and for the needle she; Man with the head, and women with the heart; Man to command, and woman to obey; All else is confusion.
Thus, poetry, as well as prose, painting, and music, reflected hegemonic notions. Yet, the stereotype of the Victorian family perhaps assumed its importance precisely because there were so many challenges to it.
In the cities, drink and crime denied many children the full influence of parental guidance, and the critics of industrialism saw in female and child labor a collection of evils that had to be addressed. But economic conditions placed women and children in this position.
Poverty, drunkenness, and alcoholism were sometimes causes of prostitution. Charles Dickens 's — portrayal of Nancy, the pathetic, doomed heroine of Oliver Twist —obliquely, and somewhat coyly, suggested how easy it was for a woman to fall prey to professional gangs.
In Mary BartonElizabeth Gaskell — captured the horror that Victorian society felt at the sight of a "fallen women" in her portrayal of the stunted relationship of the widower John Barton and his sister-in-law, the fallen woman.
Social reportage also emphasized this aspect of Victorianism: Bracebridge Hemyng's — study of prostitution suggested that, inLondon had 8, who plied this trade.Here be places remembered by Ghosts of Seattle Past, made into a series of hand-drawn maps of the city featuring the gathering sites that haunt our hearts.
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Society, state, and economy State and society. Despite the so-called “dismantling of controls” after the end of World War I, government involvement in economic life was to continue, as were increased public expenditure, extensions of social welfare, and a higher degree of administrative rationalization.
The Victorian Era is named after the period from to , the length of the rule of Great Britain's Queen Victoria. American Victorianism was an offshoot of this period and lifestyle that occurred in the United States, chiefly in heavily populated regions such as New England and the Deep South.
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