History 394: Victorian England: 1815-1919
Tuesday and Thursday, 11:45-1 in BD 182
Professor J. Bronstein
Office: Breland 225
Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 10:30-11:30
In 1815, Great Britain was a tired nation, having endured 22 years of warfare with France. But the Pax Britannica that concluded the war enabled the most prosperous and powerful century in the history of Britain. The next hundred years saw the industrial revolution push Britain to become the most powerful nation in the world, with colonies so vast that "the sun never set on the British empire." Victoria, who began her career as an 18-year-old queen, would end her career as the "Empress of India." The nation was prosperous, revelling in its technological supremacy at the 1851 Great Exhibition, and moving at unprecedented speeds across the nations rail network. But class conflict was in the offing. Even as the British aristocracy was at its zenith, foxhunting, living in country houses and enjoying the social "seasons" at London and Bath, workers protested against oppressive work conditions and grinding poverty. Although the Luddites, the Chartists, the New Model Unionists and the agricultural laborers union rose and fell over the decades, the new Labour party finally became a fixed star in the political firmament, forever changing the nature of British politics. The Great War was the capstone calling into question all of the certainties of the Victorian era.
This course will cover in detail the period from 1815 to 1919 through lectures, discussions, films, and contemporary literature.
Walter Arnstein, ed. The Past Speaks: Sources and Problems in British History, second ed., vol. 2.
Benjamin Disraeli, Sybil
William Morris, News from Nowhere (Penguin USA (Paper); ISBN: 0140433309)
Samuel Smiles, Self-Help (Penguin USA (Paper); ISBN: 0140173269)
Attendance: Attendance is mandatory. Any student who misses class more than three times during the semester without a doctors note or prior agreement with the professor will have 10 percent deducted from his or her final grade at the end of the semester.
There will be no extra credit offered. There will be no extensions on writing assignments. Students who are excused from class for illness will be expected to submit all work at the next class at which they are present. Students who are absent for any other reason must submit all work the next business day after the missed class.
A+=98-100, A=93-97, A-=90-92, B+=88-89, B=83-87, B-=80-82, C+=78-79, C=73-77, C-=70-72, D+=68-69, D=63-67, D-=60-62, F=Below 60 percent. Grades ending in .5 or above will be rounded up; grades ending in .49 and below will not.
Readings: Begin Sybil
Readings: Finish Sybil
Readings: The Past Speaks, Chapter 7
Readings: Excerpts from Chartist literature
Readings: The Past Speaks, chapter 9
Readings: Begin Self-Help
Readings: Finish Self-Help
Readings: The Past Speaks, chapter 8
Readings: Finish William Morris, News from Nowhere
Readings: The Past Speaks, chapter 10
Readings: The Past Speaks, chapter 11
Readings: The Past Speaks, chapter 13
Readings: The Past Speaks, chapter 12 and 14
Final Exam: The Final Exam will be held on Thursday, December 12 from 8-10 am.