Victorian Extremes: the Coming of Modernity

The module seeks to challenge the conventional tendency to think of the Victorian era as an age of moderation, as 'a land / In which it seemed always the afternoon' (to quote Tennyson). We shall, therefore, be paying close attention to the many extremes and extremities within Victorian culture: for example extreme faith, extreme doubt, extreme chauvinism, and extreme feminism, as well as margins, peripheries and minorities. Throughout we shall be exploring the relation between these Victorian extremes and the coming of Modernity. This exploration will include writings beyond the chronological extreme of what we normally think of as the Victorian period. Some of the texts are only available as reprints: see below for recommended reprint editions.