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Rethinking the Age of Reform: Britain 1780-1850 (Past and by Arthur Burns

By Arthur Burns

Combining the study of well-known younger students, this ebook revisits Britain's much-studied "age of reform", ahead of and after the nice Reform Act of 1832. It demonstrates that "reformers" was hoping to reform not just parliament, govt, the legislations and the church, but additionally drugs and the theater, between different entities. whereas the learn focuses totally on Britain, additionally it is essays on eire, the Empire and continental Europe. a considerable advent offers an outline of the interval and its historiography.

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Studies, 31 (1999). 20 joanna innes and arthur burns though the movement had its uses, it also had disconcertingly democratic aspects. 59 The changing religious climate of the war years had similarly ambiguous political and cultural implications. Outbreaks of revivalism embodied in some part a reaction against revolutionary excess and anarchy. 60 The growth of enthusiasm for domestic and foreign missions itself represented a kind of reform movement – one compatible with a variety of more explicitly political views.

Chs. 1–6. 30 joanna innes and arthur burns Anglicans. 93 By comparison with the pre-war scene, the post-war landscape appears heavily ideological. People did not simply hold different views; they subscribed to widely differing philosophies, theologies, even cosmologies. Late Enlightenment social and political theorizing had not come to an end with the Revolution, even if the ‘age of Enlightenment’ has conventionally been held to terminate at that point. Theories both developed and diversified. Eighteenth-century social theorizing had often been loosely set within a framework of natural religion, but the late eighteenth century saw, initially in France, the development of some provocatively materialistic and mechanistic social theories.

C. Waterman, Revolution, Economics and Religion: Christian Political Economy, 1798–1833 (Cambridge, 1991), esp. ch. 4, for concern for theological orthodoxy in this context. The rise of the heavyweight periodical press undoubtedly helped to make both public life more intellectual and intellectual life more contentious: thus not merely the major review journals – Edinburgh, Quarterly, Westminster – but also the more self-consciously religious press: the British Critic, Christian Observer, and Record, etc.

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