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Paradoxe(s) victorien(s) – Victorian Paradox(es)

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William Findlay

Résumés/Abstracts

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1Isabelle Cases (Université de Perpignan)

2Utilitarisme et Esthétisme: Le Paradoxe des Bâtiments Industriels Victoriens

3On constate dans la construction de nombreux bâtiments industriels (manufactures et entrepôts notamment) de la deuxième partie du dixneuvième siècle un souci nouveau de la forme architecturale et un effort esthétique. On peut toutefois y voir beaucoup plus que le seul signe de l’influence de certains styles, tel le néo-gothique. Des facteurs aussi divers et complexes que la rivalité entre cités industrielles ou les aspirations sociales des industriels doivent être pris en compte pour bien comprendre le phénomène. Mais on peut aussi interpréter ce souci architectural comme une tentative visant à transcender le caractère utilitaire du bâtiment industriel et à lui conférer par une amélioration esthétique une sorte de dimension humaine ou de justification morale, comme pour répondre aux critiques visant de plus en plus ouvertement la société industrielle victorienne et son impact physique et culturel. On peut donc voir selon le cas dans ce phénomène un signe de confiance et de fierté, ou l’émergence d’un doute, et donc une contradiction toute victorienne.

4Joëlle Cros (Université de Tours)

5La musique à l’époque victorienne: contraste Création/Pratique

6Contrairement à ce qui se passe sur le continent, la caractéristique la plus évidente de la musique victorienne entre les années 1830 et 1880 est le contraste très marqué entre l’extraordinaire développement de la pratique et l’absence de compositeur ayant atteint une réputation internationale. Après une présentation des deux éléments de ce contraste, on s’interrogera sur les causes sociales qui pourraient éventuellement le justifier.

7William Findlay (Université de Tours)

8“Almost Afraid to know itself”?

9The Unfolding of Scottish Identity in Victorian Times

10During the course of the nineteenth century, Scotland underwent a dramatic transformation from a predominantly backward, rural country, a junior partner in the political Union of the British Isles, to a modern, urban, industrial and commercial centre, which could proudly boast the title of “workshop of the Empire”. Yet, what price this “modernisation”, this triumphal progression towards great nation status? Did it come, as has been suggested, at the cost of Scotland’s own sense of national identity, in a slow submersion (or gradual sublimation?) of Caledonia in Britannia’s Empire and its rebirth as North Briton? De Profundis....?

11Rosie Findlay (Université de Tours)

12The Alice Syndrome: Inventing the “Golden Age” of Childhood

13By the end of the nineteenth century, social convention had placed the child in a position of veneration both inside the family unit and more widely as a public asset, the future of the nation. Enlightened commentators proudly proclaimed that this was the “golden age” of the child, that the quality of childhood had become the measure by which modern civilisations would ultimately be judged. Certainly in terms both of national aspirations as much as in concrete achievements over the century, such high claims have much to commend themselves. But beyond the limits of this would-be “wonderland” the price demanded of those unable to aspire to its safety was even more excessive. This paper proposes to explore this paradox, how a determined enlightened public opinion came to tolerate, indeed, to embrace such extreme contradictions... in the name of the child, the family and the nation itself.

14Johanne-France Just-R-Galloway (Centre d’Enseignement Supérieur de la Marine-Paris)

15Paradoxes in the Implementations of Victorian Sea Policies: Sail and Steam in the Early 19th Century Royal Navy

16In the early nineteenth century, both sail and steam had to be resorted to, which entailed not fewer but more intricacies at all levels. But solving this paradox contributed to the greater glory of the Empire.

17Trevor Harris (Université de Tours)

18Britannia super omnes: Race Theory and the Imperial Sentiment in mid-Victorian Britain

19The tensions and contradictions in the Jekyll-and-Hyde society of Victorian Britain, are clear evidence of, as well as an alibi for, the triumph of inequality: that durable imposition of a specifically British, liberal state. If liberal, indeed Whig, history was that state’s apology and a Victorian keynote, evolutionism became the socioeconomic extension of that historical justification. Its typical mode of thought was social Darwinism. Bowdlerized science “explained” the “progress” of Victorian Britain towards world domination. Insights from developments in biology or physiology, conclusions as to function and structure in the organic world were mapped, first, onto social function and structure, then onto geopolitical function and structure. Britannia magna, “Greater Britain” or the “expansion of England” became less the expression of the Empire-nation than of the manifest destiny of an imperial race...

20Win Hayes (University of Edinburgh)

21The Victorian Paradox. Sport for the Wealthy to Sport for the Masses: A Conflict of Class and Ideals

22Victoria’s reign covered a period when leisure and sporting activity began to flourish and become not just the prerogative of the wealthy but both a spectator and participation activity for the masses. The increasing order in Victorian society on general, the increasing concern of the dominant class regarding the condition and moral welfare of the poor and the increasing sensibility of society to cruelty and violence could be expected to be reflected in the developments in leisure and sport. Certainly the establishment of National Governing Bodies to organise sport and the movements for ‘rational recreation’ and muscular ‘Christianity’ reflect attempts by the upper and middle classes to involve the poor in wholesome and enhancing leisure. This paper will look at the paradox of this drive to involve the working classes in wholesome sporting pursuits while at the same time banning them from participating in them due to the physical nature of their work.

23Karen Sayer (Trinity and All Saints College, University of Leeds)

24Paradoxical Places; Imagining the Urban and the Rural in Victorian Britain

25First some Paradoxes:

26City = Culture therefore sophisticated & good, but also corrupting and bad.

27Country = Nature therefore pure & good, but also bestial and bad, (or boring).

28Countryman = innocent of politics vs. bumpkin.

29Countrywoman = innocent of sex vs. earthy seductress.

30Country = fresh air vs. mud; nice views (trees) vs. malaria.

31It is not possible to consider Culture within the Victorian context without its binary opposite Nature. Yet the boundary that was supposed to exist between the country and the city was maintained in the nineteenth century (as before) despite a constant movement of people, money and goods across it. Ideologically, the same topography that separated the middle class home from the urban slum, and the middle class family from their servants, also mapped the division ‘country and city’. Through the establishment of the urban and rural as fixed, immutable and unconnected spaces, crosscutting experiences of class were elided, domesticity assembled and whiteness established. This is pertinent not just to our understanding of the Victorians but also to the way in which we write histories of the Victorians, the way we re-present the past.

32Richard Tholoniat (Université du Maine)

33Approches imagologiques de la société victorienne et édouardienne

34Pour rendre compte des paradoxes du “caractère national” du peuple anglais au XIXème siècle, deux thèses, celles de Pierre Reboul et Andrès Barblan, adoptent une approche imagologique. Après avoir présenté leurs conclusions, j’avancerai une tentative de résolution des paradoxes caractérologiques de l’Angleterre victorienne à partir des travaux de Geert Hofstede.

35Tri Tran (Université de Tours)

36L’Amendement à loi des Pauvres de 1834: oppression sociale ou promotion sociale?

37L’amendement de 1834 à la Loi des Pauvres est souvent considéré comme un des facteurs déclencheurs du mouvement chartiste; il fut à l’origine d’un profond mécontentement populaire, dans le monde ouvrier, car ses détracteurs soulignèrent à juste titre que la nouvelle loi durcissait les conditions d’octroi des secours et des aides aux plus pauvres. Une étude des archives parlementaires, gouvernementales et paroissiales nous permettent de nuancer ce jugement: les correspondances échangées entre le Poor Law Board et les paroisses, les enquêtes parlementaires, et les minutes des conseils paroissiaux nous montrent les possibilités réelles offertes par la Nouvelle loi des pauvres, par le biais de l’apprentissage et de l’émigration. Il semble que la loi n’était pas si cruelle et les autorités locales disposaient d’une certaine liberté de jugement. Les archives montrent qu’Edwin Chadwick lui-même ne fut pas insensible aux cas les plus affligeants qui lui furent transmis. C’est pourquoi on peut dire finalement que la New Poor Law fut un paradoxe victorien.

© Presses universitaires François-Rabelais, 2005

Conditions d’utilisation : http://www.openedition.org/6540

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