Sunday, May 28, 2006

Module 1: Activity 1

Victorian Age

The Victorian Age refers to that which was written during the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901). This was the time period in which the novel 1st began to dominate English literature. Most Victorian novels were long and full of intricate language, but the dominant feature was the close representation to the real social life of the age. It was largely influenced by the development of the emerging middle class and the manners and expectations of this class, as opposed to the aristocrats that were dominant in the previous ages. This time saw readers and writers catering to the varied tastes, not just the wealthy.

At this point we begin to see feminist issues and attack of the double standard of sexual morality by Josephine Butler. Writers began to write about prostitution as a social problem, rather than a fact of urban life. An example of this was Charles Booth. Charles Dickens associated prostitution with the industrialization of modern life, portraying prostitutes as human commodities consumed and then used up and thrown away like garbage. Victorian literature forms a transition between romantic period writers and the 20th century literatures. Other novelists and poets of this time include the Bronte sisters, Robert Browning, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Lewis Carroll, Rudyard Kipling, Lord Alfred Tennyson and Oscar Wilde.

Prevailing methods of publication included serials and short episodes, usually printed monthly. This kept the reader interested and left them with cliffhangers, which added intrigue and drama. Also, as mentioned in the podcast, this was a time of beauty in everything from literature, to art, to music.

Works Cited

"Victorian literature." Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 22 May 2006. Wikipedia Foundation, Inc. 27 May 2006. <>

(P.S. I know the works cited should be hanging indented, and paragraphs should be indented as well, but I could not make that cooperate on this post :) )


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