1880-1910 Late Victorian Era Context

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  • 1880-1910
    • Social class,status, economics and identity
      • “hedged around by a network of assumptions and conventions” - Jose Harris
      • ‘To my mind it was an extraordinary improvement (suburbans), but as an example of the ignorance of the lower classes”-Matthew Taunton
      • Due to an increase in machinery, we saw a decrease in work for the labourers and working class which resulted in many women being driven to prostitution
      • Worker mistreatment lead to the government making a series of laws to improve the working standards and conditions of the labourers.The british obtained industrial dominance within the overall world economy, main competitors were from the northern states of the USA, the Germany confederation, France and Belgium.
      • Child labour became very common in the victorian era: working for as long as 12-18 hours a day in harsh working conditions
      • Between 1880-1910 England was the world’s first urban society,there was three main social classes :upper class “wealthy class” , middle class and the lower “working” class
      • During the period between 1880- 1910 a Women’s identity was normally stripped from themselves when they married a man. A women’s role during this period was to stay at home and prepare the house for their husbands after a long day of work and take care of the kids if they had any
    • Morality, sexuality, duality and the Gothic
    • The Woman Question, ‘New Woman’ fiction, Suffrage
      • Women’s suffrage had been an ongoing advocacy prior to the 1880’s, but the successes of the movement were limited. Between 1869 and 1884 there were almost annual debates on women’s suffrage in Parliament, yet they failed to achieve any rights for women. In 1890 Millicent Faucett was elected President of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS) which was considered the passive and calmer suffrage movement.
      • In 1903, The Women’s Social and Political Union was founded by Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughters Christabel and Sylvia.
      • The suffragettes, once arrested, still fought in prison through the use of hunger strikes where they refused to eat as a form of passive resistance.
      • ‘At the turn of the twentieth century, women had to contest established beliefs that politics was a man’s domain’ (Dworkin, 1986).
      • ‘A machine that had evolved to run a patriarchal society’  (Crawford, 2003)
      • ‘Women’s interests were deemed to be subsumed to men’ (Crawford, 2003)
    • Imperialism, colonisation, race, identity,the Other
    • Technological advancements, urbanisation, effects of industrialisation, Darwinism and Religion


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