Description : To Londoners, the years 1840 to 1870 were years of dramatic change and achievement. As suburbs expanded and roads multiplied, London was ripped apart to build railway lines and stations and life-saving sewers. The Thames was contained by embankments, and traffic congestion was eased by the first underground railway in the world. A start was made on providing housing for the "deserving poor." There were significant advances in medicine, and the Ragged Schools are perhaps the least known of Victorian achievements, in those last decades before universal state education. In 1851 the Great Exhibition managed to astonish almost everyone, attracting exhibitors and visitors from all over the world. But there was also appalling poverty and exploitation, exposed by Henry Mayhew and others. For the laboring classes, pay was pitifully low, the hours long, and job security nonexistent. Liza Picard shows us the physical reality of daily life in Victorian London. She takes us into schools and prisons, churches and cemeteries. Many practical innovations of the time—flushing lavatories, underground railways, umbrellas, letter boxes, driving on the left—point the way forward. But this was also, at least until the 1850s, a city of cholera outbreaks, transportation to Australia, public executions, and the workhouse, where children could be sold by their parents for as little as £12 and streetpeddlers sold sparrows for a penny, tied by the leg for children to play with. Cruelty and hypocrisy flourished alongside invention, industry, and philanthropy.
Description : A book in the ecology of child development, The Degeneracy Crisis and Victorian Youth studies stress in the lives of children in the Victorian age (1837 - 1901). The term degeneracy is pursued in the context of biosocial problems, especially those involving the young. The book begins by presenting an overview of the nineteenth century, noting the changes in population, urbanization, the reform movement, and the rise of Darwinism. It next examines the social and health contexts in which human development took place, considering genetics, nutrition, health, mortality, and climate. Jordan then addresses empirically the nature of growth in Victorian children and young adults, presenting height and health data and using them as the dependent measure for descriptive and multivariate analysis of the Victorian economy. The concept of degeneracy, the evolution of social policy, and the efforts of specific reformers are discussed with attention to the role of government policy toward the end of the period.
Description : In Victorian London, filth was everywhere: horse traffic filled the streets with dung, household rubbish went uncollected, cesspools brimmed with "night soil," graveyards teemed with rotting corpses, the air itself was choked with smoke. In this intimately visceral book, Lee Jackson guides us through the underbelly of the Victorian metropolis, introducing us to the men and women who struggled to stem a rising tide of pollution and dirt, and the forces that opposed them. Through thematic chapters, Jackson describes how Victorian reformers met with both triumph and disaster. Full of individual stories and overlooked details—from the dustmen who grew rich from recycling, to the peculiar history of the public toilet—this riveting book gives us a fresh insight into the minutiae of daily life and the wider challenges posed by the unprecedented growth of the Victorian capital.
Description : Paul Newland's illuminating study explores the ways in which London's East End has been constituted in a wide variety of texts – films, novels, poetry, television shows, newspapers and journals. Newland argues that an idea or image of the East End, which developed during the late nineteenth century, continues to function in the twenty-first century as an imaginative space in which continuing anxieties continue to be worked through concerning material progress and modernity, rationality and irrationality, ethnicity and 'Otherness', class and its related systems of behaviour.The Cultural Construction of London's East End offers detailed examinations of the ways in which the East End has been constructed in a range of texts including BBC Television'sEastEnders, Monica Ali's Brick Lane, Walter Besant's All Sorts and Conditions of Men, Thomas Burke'sLimehouse Nights, Peter Ackroyd's Hawksmoor, films such as Piccadilly, Sparrows Can't Sing, The Long Good Friday, From Hell, The Elephant Man, and Spider, and in the work of Iain Sinclair.
Description : The Rise and Fall of Radical Westminster, 1780-1890 explores a critical chapter in the story of Britain's transition to democracy. Utilising the remarkably rich documentation generated by Westminster elections, Baer reveals how the most radical political space in the age of oligarchy became the most conservative and tranquil in an age of democracy.
Description : Nursing Before Nightingale is a study of the transformation of nursing in England from the beginning of the nineteenth century until the emergence of the Nightingale nurse as the standard model in the 1890s. From the nineteenth century on historians have considered Florence Nightingale, with her training school established at St. Thomas's Hospital in 1860, the founder of modern nursing. This book investigates two major earlier reforms in nursing: a doctor-driven reform which came to be called the 'ward system,' and the reforms of the Anglican Sisters, known as the 'central system' of nursing. Rather than being the beginning of nursing reform, Nightingale nursing was the culmination of these two earlier reforms. Recent historians of nursing have ascribed the nineteenth century makeover of nursing to two causes: medicalization by hospital doctors who found the old independent nurse practitioners a threat, and the inculcation of middle class values by philanthropists. By contrast this volume demonstrates that the real cause of nursing reform was the development of the new scientific medicine which emphasized supportive therapeutics and, as a result, became heavily dependent on skilled nursing for successful implementation of these treatments. The pre-industrial work ethic of the old hospital nurses could not meet the requirements of the new medicine. Recruitment and retention of working-class persons was also extremely difficult because nursing in the early nineteenth century formed the lowest rung of the occupation of domestic service and was a job of last resort. It was still more difficult to recruit educated women or 'ladies.' There were intricate interactions between the requirements of clinical nursing under hospital medicine's new regime on the one hand, and on the other, the contemporary ideal of a lady, class structure, economic realities, the reformation of manners, and the detrimental impact of violent denominational controversies in a very religious society. This book, therefore, will be of great value to those studying the history of medicine, labour, religion, gender studies and the rise of a respectable society in the nineteenth century.
Description : Jessica's First Prayer and Froggy's Little Brother are exemplars of the 'street arab' story, a genre that flourished in Victorian Britain in response to child poverty and destitution. This critical edition features the original texts of the first editions, and examines the stories through a critical lens and in their historical context.