The Victorian era was a time of unprecedented transformation, yet it is often understood only through the stereotypes of crowded factories, child labour and emotional repression. In this entertaining and scholarly introduction, Dr David Gange explores the political, social and economic realities that defined life for Victorian people.
Weaving together the perspectives of historians and literary scholars with movements in art, science and ethics, Gange paints a colourful, interdisciplinary portrait of everyday life in nineteenth century Britain. The Victorians: A Beginner's Guide features such famous figures as Dickens and Disraeli, while offering a thought-provoking examination of how our perceptions of this pivotal period of history have changed.
'Never anything less than an engaging, clear and thoroughly appetising scholarly introduction to the "multiple identities in fragile balance" that characterised the Victorian era'.
– BBC History
'Beautifully written, erudite and evocative... Whether you're a seasoned reader or a new student, this work has much to offer and is the best introduction available to the Victorians and their worlds.'
– Dr Sadiah Qureshi, Birmingham University
"This is undoubtedly the best single volume on Victorian culture and history out there – and not just for beginners. It is wide-ranging, incisive, smart, generous to other scholars and beautifully conceived: it will be integral to a generation of students’ understanding of the era."
– Professor Simon Goldhill, University of Cambridge
“I own a shelf full of introductions to the Victorians, but this one is unquestionably the best. The Victorians: A Beginner’s Guide covers all the key issues and topics in a lively, engaging, and authoritative manner. It also has the incomparable advantage of being written by one of the very best scholars in the field.”
– Professor Timothy Larsen, Wheaton College, Illinois