The Victorian Period and Charles Dickens

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The Victorian Period and Charles Dickens

  1. 1. 1830-1901
  2. 2. Queen Victoria and the Victorian Temper Ruled England from 1837-1901 Exemplifies Victorian qualities: earnestness, moral responsibility, domestic propriety The Victorian Period was an age of transition An age characterized by energy and high moral purpose
  3. 3. The Reform Bill of 1832 Transformed English class structure Extended the right to vote to all males owning property Second Reform Bill passed in 1867 Extended right to vote to working class
  4. 4. The Time of Troubles 1830’s and 1840’s Unemployment Poverty Rioting Slums in large cities Working conditions for women and children were terrible
  5. 5. The Mid-Victorian Period 1848-1870 A time of prosperity A time of improvement A time of stability A time of optimism
  6. 6. The British Empire Large scale immigration to British colonies In 1857, Parliament took over the government of India and Queen Victoria became empress of India. Many British people saw the expansion of empire as a moral responsibility. Missionaries spread Christianity in India, Asia, and Africa.
  7. 7. The Role of WomenProtected and enshrinedwithin the home, her rolewas to create a place ofpeace where man couldtake refuge from thedifficulties of modern life.The only occupation atwhich an unmarried middle-class woman could earn aliving and maintain someclaim to gentility was that ofa governess.Bad working conditionsand underemploymentdrove thousands of womeninto prostitution
  8. 8. The Victorian Novel Charles Dickens Victorian novels seek to represent a large and comprehensive social world, with a variety of classes. Victorian novels are realistic. For the first time, women were major writers: the Brontes, Elizabeth Gaskell, George Eliot. The Victorian novel was a principal form of entertainment.
  9. 9. Knowing more about Dickens Born February 7, 1812 1824 -- Dickens worked at Warren’s Blacking Warehouse 1824 -- Mr. Dickens (Charles’ father) taken to debtors’ prison; family joins him Imprisoned from February – May 1827 - Dickens family evicted from home for not paying rent Charles is pulled out of private school Charles, now 15, becomes law clerk and free-lance writer He fathered 10 children. His wife left him (in 1856). He gave numerous talks across Europe and in America. He developed heart trouble.
  10. 10. His Works 1843 -- A Christmas Carol 1845 -- The Cricket on the Hearth 1846 -- The Battle of Life 1850 -- David Copperfield 1853 -- A Child’s History of England 1854 -- Hard Times 1859 -- A Tale of Two Cities 1861 -- Great Expectations 1869 -- The Mystery of Edwin Drood (unfinished)
  11. 11. His Social Conscience  He crusaded for children’s rights.  He was an advocate of child labor laws to protect children.  He opposed cruelty, deprivation, and corporal punishment of children.  He protested a greedy, uncaring, materialistic society through such works as A Christmas Carol
  12. 12. Charles Dickens’ End 1870 -- Dickens, who had been in declining health since 1866, died of a cerebral hemorrhage. He is buried in the Poets’ Corner in Westminster Abbey in London Dickens’ epitaph: “He was a sympathizer to the poor, the suffering, and the oppressed; and by his death, one of England’s greatest writers is lost to the world.”

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