This title covers sex, gender, charity and class in Victorian Britain. This volume seeks to address the questions of poverty, charity, and public welfare, taking the nineteenth-century London Foundling Hospital as its focus. It delineates the social rules that constructed the gendered world of the Victorian age, and uses 'respectability' as a factor for analysis: the women who successfully petitioned the Foundling Hospital for admission of their infants were not East End prostitutes, but rather unmarried women, often domestic servants, determined to maintain social respectability. The administrators of the Foundling Hospital reviewed over two hundred petitions annually; deliberated on about one hundred cases; and, accepted not more than 25 per cent of all cases. Using primary material from the Foundling Hospital's extensive archives, this study moves methodically from the broad social and geographical context of London and the Foundling Hospital itself, to the micro-historical case data of individual mothers and infants.
This 1995 book explores what the Victorians said about the Stuart past, with particular emphasis on changing interpretations of Cromwell and the Puritans. It analyses in detail the historical writings of Henry Hallam, Thomas Babington Macaulay, Thomas Carlyle and Samuel Rawson Gardiner, placing them in a context that stresses the importance of religious controversy for the nineteenth century. The book argues that the Victorians found the Stuart past problematic because they perceived a connection between the religious disputes of the seventeenth century and the sectarian discord of their own age. Cromwell and the Puritans became an acceptable part of the national past only as the English state lost its Anglican exclusiveness. The tendency to accommodate Cromwell and the Puritans, particularly in the work of Gardiner, thus reflected a process of nation building that sought to remove sectarian divisions and which reached its climax as the Victorian age came to its close.