10 week course £50
In this ten week course, the first of three to be delivered through the academic year, we will endeavour to 'get to know' the young Queen, monarch of a rapidly developing Britain. We will consider the impact of technological advance, which formed the latter part of the Industrial Revolution (1750-1830), in the form of railways, canals and steamships, on Great Britain and her rapidly expanding colonial world. This 'brave new world' was showcased through the 'Great Exhibition' of 1851 and fought for in the Crimean War (1854-1855).
At home, social developments such as the first steps taken towards a more democratic political system which allowed, by the end of the reign, most men the right to vote, will be considered, as well as the position of women in the male dominated society of the day. We will contemplate and seek to understand the hard pressed lives of the poor, both in England and Ireland, which contrasted sharply with those at the fortunate top end of society; despite the steps taken toward social reform taken by Lord Shaftesbury who campaigned for improved conditions in factories and mines.
The following two courses will explore the latter years of the reign helping us to understand the 'Victorian Legacy' of the foundations of political democracy, trade unions and religious freedom which have underpinned the ongoing existence of British Constitutional Monarchy.