Rise of the Middle Class

2436 WordsMar 20, 201110 Pages
Jyoti Rana Research Scholar Dept. of English B.P.S.M.V, Khanpur RISE OF THE MIDDLE CLASS The Victorian Era is named after the Queen of England, Queen Victoria. She ruled from 1837 to 1901 when she died. That era, which followed the Regency time period, is characterized by reforms in the government, industrialization in the factories, economic prosperity, and moral decline. It forms a link and transition between the writers of the romantic period and the very different literature of the 20th century. It was a tremendously exciting period when many artistic styles, literary schools, as well as, social, political and religious movements flourished. It was a time of prosperity, broad imperial expansion, and great political reform. It was also…show more content…
The middle class consisted of the bourgeoisie - the middle working class. It was made up of factory owners, bankers, shopkeepers, merchants, lawyers, engineers, businessmen, traders, and other professionals. These people could be sometimes extremely rich, but in normal circumstances they were not privileged, and they especially resented this. There was a very large gap between the middle class and the lower class. Industrialisation changed the class structure dramatically in the late 18th century. Hostility was created between the upper and lower classes. As a result of industrialisation, there was a huge boost of the middle and working class. The image of the nineteenth century as a period of great opportunity for men of energy and skill is one that has been long established. In the past, historians have argued that an industrious middle-class made great fortunes in the early days of the industrial revolution and converted economic success into political power in the 1832 Reform Act. This political power was then used to ensure policy reflected the middle-class interests. Such arguments present the middle-class as a coherent body mobilising their economic and political power to forge society in their image. Challenging landed privilege and aristocratic corruption, this industrial and urban middle-class can be seen as striving to establish a society based on merit rather than on one's birth. Through education reform, schemes of civic

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