The Victorian Period (1832-1901) Collection Notes 6 • Victorian Period (1832-1901) Collection Notes from your text • What social and political factors affected life in Victorian England? • What did Victorians value? • How did discoveries in science affect people’s beliefs? • How did Victorian writers respond to issues of their time? • What social and political factors affected life in Victorian England? • Queen Victoria’s Reign (1837-1901)- time of political and social stability were the result of conditions that began before Victoria and most of her subjects were born. • After Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo in 1815 Britain was not involved in a major European war until WWWI began in 1914 • Empire that started in the 17 and 18th century with British interest in India and North American grew and by Victoria ‘s reign there were 200 million subjects living outside of Great Britain • Industrial Revolution of the 18 century had expanded. Growing industry and jobs for the new middle class. New class brought about social and economic changes were expressed in gradual political reform and working class politicians and voters achieved political power while leaving monarchy and aristocracy in place. • 1840- first decade of Queen Victoria’s reign was known as the Hungry Forties. 1.5 million unemployed workers and their families were on some form of poverty relief. • Children worked in factories. • Ireland potato blight (1845-1849) famine killed million people and forced two million 25% of the population to emigrate. • Rapid growth of cities made them filthy and disorderly due to lack of city planning to accommodate nearly 2 million people • Violence broke out at political rallies called in the 1840s to protest policies that kept food prices high and deprived working men and ALL women the right to vote. • 1848 the political climate had caused the government to army themselves in fear of a revolution. • 1850s food prices started to drop again due to the increase in trade with other countries and the diets of the middle class improved (fruit, meat, and margarine) were stables for the working class. • Factories and railroads made services and goods such as postage, newspapers, clothing, furniture, travel and other goods and services cheap. • 1828 Universal adult suffrage in 1928 extended the vote to women at age 21 • 1832 First Reform Bill extended the vote to all men who owned property worth 10 pounds or more in yearly rent. • 1867 Second Reform Bill gave the right to vote to most working class men except for farm workers. • 1870 state supported schools were established 1880 made compulsory and free in 1891 • 1918 women 30 yrs old and older won the right to vote. What did Victorians value? • Attitude of the middle-class Victorians towards government history and civilization. History=progress • Progress=material improvement could be seen touched counted and measured • Valued cleanliness and order • Middle class believed that things were better than in the past. • Victorian Society was concerned with making sure that things were morally and intellectually appropriate. • Wording was altered in publications to eliminate the “blush “that it might cause a reader. • In art and fiction sex, birth, and death were softened by sentimental conventions (tender courtships and old people were saints and babies angels) • Victorian society regarded seduced or adulterous women as “fallen” but not their male partners. • Victorian society did not want a strong authority in their central government but fathers in middle-class households were the power figures in fact and fiction. • Women were subject to male authority and were expected to make their homes comfortable for their husbands. Women who did not marry had few options and men sometimes postponed marriage due to the fact that they could not afford it. • Prudery and social order were intended to control the immorality and sexual excesses that Victorians associated with chaos and the regency of George IV (1811-1820) • How did discoveries in science affect people’s beliefs? • Intellectual advancements during this age caused advancements in science through the works of Charles Darwin and his theories about the evolution of species. Industrialization of England supported science, technology, chemistry, and engineering How did Victorian writers respond to issues of their time? • In the first half, writers complained that materialist ideas of reality completely overlooked the spirit or soul that made life beautiful and just. • Some in the Victorian age reassured their readers that the world was” right” while others asked them to consider whether human life and the natural world made as much sense as they had once hoped. • Charles Dickens is considered the most popular author from the Victorian age. His works depicted how people were being abused, neglected, and abused. A Christmas Carol shows this and also shows how material wealth does not buy a peaceful existence. • Victorian bride and groom. Flaming June by Lord Leighton 1895 Ophelia by John Millias 1852 • Some writes of this time believed in a higher power and others began to question. However, the writers were writing for the age in which they lived. • “ (Victorian writers) …sent their words to work in the world to alter, to reinforce, to challenge, to enlarge, or to temper the ideas and feelings with which their contemporaries managed their lives. QUIZ!! Write the question and answer. • What social and political factors affected life in Victorian England? • What did Victorians value? • How did discoveries in science affect people’s beliefs? • How did Victorian writers respond to issues of their time?