Victorian Minds by Gertrude Himmelfarb

By Gertrude Himmelfarb

The place "Victorianism" as soon as conjured up a picture of smugness, hypocrisy, and mindlessness, it now indicates relatively the opposite: an age of excessive highbrow, ethical, and non secular stress, during which the common difficulties of modernity have been posed of their such a lot acute kinds. Gertrude Himmelfarb's exceptional piece of highbrow historical past explores those tensions and issues of sympathy, candor, and significant subtlety. Victorian Minds is a learn of intellectuals in trouble and of ideologies in transition, rendered with an beauty of fashion and notion. "Few works that i do know show the buzz of the highbrow lifetime of 19th-century England as instantly. ... The essays are impressive no much less for the cogency in their wit than for the diversity and precision in their scholarship"―Lionel Trilling. "Precise and discriminating ... an exemplary examine of the nineteenth century and an excellent creation to the 20th."―Robert A. Nisbet. "Miss Himmelfarb is a author to whom the association of principles into complicated shapes and styles is relevant, and prefer a lot of her subjects-and relatively few glossy intellectuals-she is able to poised and significant generalization."― A. S. Byatt.

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Paper) 1. Great Britain—Intellectual life—19th century. 2. Great Britain—History—Victoria, 1837–1901. I. Title. 081—dc20 94-43053 FOR William and Elizabeth CONTENTS INTRODUCTION PROTO-VICTORIANS I Edmund Burke 1. The Hero as Politician 2. The Politician as Philosopher II The Haunted House of Jeremy Bentham III The Specter of Malthus HIGH VICTORIANS IV The Other John Stuart Mill V Lord Acton: The Historian as Moralist VI Leslie Stephen: The Victorian as Intellectual VII Walter Bagehot: A Common Man with Uncommon Ideas VIII James Anthony Froude: A Forgotten Worthy IX John Buchan: The Last Victorian VICTORIAN IDEAS AND IDEOLOGIES X The Victorian Ethos: Before and After Victoria XI The Victorian Angst XII Varieties of Social Darwinism XIII Politics and Ideology: The Reform Act of 1867 Index INTRODUCTION FROM EDMUND BURKE (1729–97) to John Buchan (1875–1940): the compass of this volume is evidently broader than a literal reading of the title would suggest.

The long-standing quarrel among historians of ideas between the textual critics and the intellectual biographers seems to me to be as futile as the similar quarrel between narrative and analytical historians. No one method, surely, has an exclusive claim to propriety or superiority, but neither is the choice of method in any particular case a matter of indifference. Although most of the essays were originally written for other occasions, they have all been revised, some have been rewritten out of all recognition (the only vestige of the original being the opening paragraphs stating the problem), and some have been written expressly for this volume.

Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents” (1770), Works, I, 336. 8. , p. 368. 9. “Speech on Reform of Representation” (1782), Works, VI, 151. 1. Letter to Mercer, Feb. 26, 1790, Letters of Edmund Burke, ed. Harold Laski (Oxford, 1922), pp. 286–7. 2. “Reflections,” Works, II, 362, 429. 3. “Letter to William Smith” (Jan. 1795), Works, VI, 52–3. 4. Hoffman and Levack, p. xxi. 5. Letters (Jan. 31, 1792), p. 328. 6. “Reflections,” Works, II, 307. 7. , p. 514. 8. “Remarks on the Policy of the Allies” (Oct.

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