In the nineteenth century Britain led the world in the dramatic process of industrialisation but the consequences for British society were far reaching. How were ordinary people affected by these developments? This course aims to investigate the lives of the Victorian people both rich and poor, in order to gain an understanding of the key issues that transformed Britain during this period.
This course was written by Annette Mayer who specialises in nineteenth and twentieth century British history. Annette is the author of three online courses for OUDCE. Listen to her talking about the course:
When Victoria ascended the throne in 1837, Britain was already engaged in the complex and dramatic process of industrialisation. This process had unforetold consequences for the British people, challenging the lives of both rural people and those who migrated to the new expanding towns and cities. Death, disease and poverty were just some of the daily hardships encountered. Inventions and entrepreneurial initiatives brought wealth and prosperity to many, but to others just a life of misery and endurance. People’s public and private lives were also affected by distinct Victorian values which shaped attitudes towards religion, philanthropy, the role of women and leisure activities. It was a society of great contrasts, in many respects deeply religious, yet in other ways often seemingly immoral and uncaring.
This course will investigate the key features of Victorian society and will seek to establish the links between economic and social change in order to understand the significant developments which transformed Britain during this period. It will also evaluate and assess the underlying values and attitudes which shaped Victorian society.
For information on how the courses work, please click here.