Nineteenth-Century Britain: A Very Short Introduction

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First published as part of the best-selling The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, Christopher Harvie and Colin Matthew's Very Short Introduction to Nineteenth-Century Britain is a sharp but subtle account of remarkable economic and social change and an even more remarkable political stability. Britain in 1789 was overwhelmingly rural, agrarian, multilingual, and almost half Celtic. By 1914, when it faced its greatest test since the defeat of Napoleon, it was largely urban and English. Christopher Harvie and Colin Matthew show the forces behind Britain's rise to its imperial zenith, and the continuing tensions within the nations and classes of the 'union state'. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
 

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Contents

1 Reflections on the Revolutions
1
2 Industrial Development
9
3 Reform and Religion
18
4 The Wars Abroad
22
5 Roads to Freedom
30
6 Coping with Reform
35
7 Unless the Lord Build the City
41
8 The Ringing Grooves of Change
48
16 Pomp and Circumstance
101
17 A Great Change in Manners
105
The Conservative Resurgence
107
Home Rule Frustrated
112
20 Reluctant Imperialists?
118
New Views of the State
125
22 Old Liberalism New Liberalism Labourism and Tariff Reform
131
A Crisis of the State Contained
136

Palmerstons Years
54
10 Incorporation
59
An Industrial Economy Rampant
64
Town and Country
77
The Urban Worker
86
The Lower Middle Class
94
15 The Propertied Classes
97
24 Your English Summers Done
143
Further Reading
147
Chronology
153
Prime Ministers 17891914
159
Index
161
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About the author (2000)

Christopher Harvie and Colin Matthew were both brought up and educated in Edinburgh. Harvie went via the Open University to become Professor of British and Irish Studies at Tübingen in Germany, becoming a historian of modern Scotland and North Sea oil; from Oxford, Matthew edited the Gladstone Diaries, wrote an award-winning life of the Victorian statesman, and became Editor of the New Dictionary of National Biography in 1992. Colin Matthewdied in 1999.

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