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Victorian Cities

Staff contact: Richard Rodger

The module explores the structures of power and authority that affected the changing production and use of private and public space in British cities during the nineteenth century. A central aim of the module is to understand the distinctive elements of urban life in Victorian Britain, and to do so through contemporary accounts, images, and buildings. 'Reading the city', therefore, is not confined to secondary works and students will be encouraged to use a variety of sources to understand the social, economic, political and cultural forces that affected what became the majority experience for Britain - an urban lifestyle.

The aims and objectives of the module are:

  • To encourage students to make connections between different aspects of social, economic, cultural and political history in the setting of British cities c.1800- 1914.
  • To use primary sources - texts, buildings, pictures, testimony, data - to understand how the history of the period has been constructed.
  • To understand the context of problems in our contemporary cities.
  • To develop communication skills, both oral and written, and to enhance critical awareness


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Last updated: 13 February 2003
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