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Power to the People? Proto-Social History

  • Helen Kingstone
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Nineteenth-Century Writing and Culture book series (PNWC)

Abstract

Chapter 6 continues the previous chapter’s analysis of long-overlooked Victorian contemporary histories by Harriet Martineau, J. R. Green, and Spencer Walpole. They were radical not only in narrating the controversial recent past, but also in aspiring to write social history. They all found this difficult to achieve in practice, and structured their narratives on a political chronology. Their radicalism comes into relief, however, in a comparison with Charlotte M. Yonge’s The Victorian Half Century: A Jubilee Book (1887), which is distorted by its royalist focus. The final section examines all four historians’ use of the unifying trope “the nation.” This atemporal concept sometimes encompasses everyone and sometimes only the middle classes. Ultimately, Victorian contemporary historians are shown as unable to represent the whole social spectrum.

Keywords

French Revolution Royal Family Social Body Military History History Writing 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Bibliography

  1. Carlyle, Thomas. The French Revolution: A History [1837]. 3 vols. London: Chapman & Hall, 1896.Google Scholar
  2. ———. A Short History of the English People [1874]. London: Macmillan, 1878.Google Scholar
  3. Horne, R. H. The New Spirit of the Age. New York: J. C. Riker, 1844.Google Scholar
  4. ———. The History of England during the Thirty Years’ Peace. 2 vols. London: Charles Knight, 1849.Google Scholar
  5. Walpole, Spencer. A History of England from the Conclusion of the Great War in 1815 [1878–1886]. 6 vols. London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1890.Google Scholar
  6. ———. The Land of Home Rule: An Essay on the History and Constitution of the Isle of Man. London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1893.Google Scholar
  7. ———. The Victorian Half Century: A Jubilee Book. London: Macmillan, 1887.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helen Kingstone
    • 1
  1. 1.Leeds Centre for Victorian StudiesLeeds Trinity UniversityLeedsUnited Kingdom

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