Building Jerusalem: The Rise and Fall of the Victorian


Building Jerusalem: The Rise and Fall of the Victorian City This is less a history of Victorian cities than an intellectual history of Victorians relationship to modernity and industrialization, of which, of course, cities were one important part It s rambling, but rarely boring.Hunt begins with the dolorous statistics on life in early Victorian cities In places like St Giles in London, or Blackfriars in Glasgow, population increased by 50 or 100% in just a few years in the early 19th century, while the amount of housing stayed the exact same From 1 This is less a history of Victorian cities than an intellectual history of Victorians relationship to modernity and industrialization, of which, of course, cities were one important part It s rambling, but rarely boring.Hunt begins with the dolorous statistics on life in early Victorian cities In places like St Giles in London, or Blackfriars in Glasgow, population increased by 50 or 100% in just a few years in the early 19th century, while the amount of housing stayed the exact same From 1800 to 1841 cities like Sheffield grew from 45,000 to 111,000, Bradford from 13,000 to 104,000, and Manchester from 95,000 to 310,000 James Philips Kay, the son of a nonconformist cotton mill owner, left Edinburgh to be a doctor for the slums of Manchester, and he was shocked by what he saw, leading him to write The Moral and Physical Condition of the Working Class, in 1832, which detailed the horrible living conditions of Mancunians It later inspired Engels s splenetic work on the same city The New General Register Office of 1837 estimated that life expectancy in Manchester was 27 years, while in the rural districts it was almost 35 Across England, the number of convicted criminals increased eightfold in the first 40 years of 19th century Something had clearly gone wrong.Perhaps it was not surprising that many began to romanticize a glorious past Thomas Carlyle, a Scottish Presbyterian once destined for the church, used the German Romantics like Goethe to savage modern industrial society and its intellectual defenders, like Jeremy Bentham and his Utilitarians He formulated the idea that the cash nexus had become the only foundation of modern society, and that self love supplanted community feeling Carlyle and others, though, pointed out that diseases, crime, and vice showed that everyone was connected He inspired Dickens, Disraeli, and countless others to inveigh against a false God of Mammon and utility Along with Sir Walter Scott and many others, he also helped bring back a celebration of the Middle Ages John Britton and Thomas Rickman, in their Attempt to Discriminate the Styles of Architecture in England 1817 revivified the Gothic architecture as most expressive of England s national, medieval genius, especially in its late, Perpendicular Gothic Style, and in turn inspired the lapsed French Catholic A.W.N Pugin, whose Contrasts, set off the rich community expressed in medieval architecture with modern gaols and panopticons John Ruskin in his Stones of Venice, and his friend the Anglican architect William Butterfield, who pioneered structural polychromy, made Venetian Gothic a new standard style as well, in an attempt to recover that same national and medieval community.By contrast, people like historian Thomas Babington Macaulay attacked medievalism and celebrated the rise of the new cities, which they said were getting healthier and wealthier all the time Assisted by a host of nonconformist reformers, such as journalists Edward Baines, Sr and Jr of the Leeds Mercury , and continental allies such as French historian Francois Guizot, they found another past in which the Puritan Middle Classes as once exemplified by Cromwell created all the good in the world through industriousness and energy Historians like Richard Vaughn The Age of Great Cities 1843 celebrated the civic virtue of commercial ancient Greek towns against static estates and medieval cloisters Others touted the medieval commercial Italian city states, like the Liverpudlian William Roscoe in his Life of Lorenzo de Medici in 1796 Soon, works by Madame de Stael The Germans , and William Stubbs Constitutional History of England recovered Angl0 Saxon heritage, which they celebrated as invigorating localism against French centralization while ignoring the old Saxon avoidance of cities These groups celebrated the voluntary associations of cities, like the Manchester Literary and Philosophical Societies from 1781, Manchester Mechanics Institute of 1825, and the the Manchester Statistical Society of 1834, as opposed to the top down autocracies of the middle ages People like the self made Richard Cobden urged Manchester to incorporate and expand their own municipal power, which they did in 1838.The combination of this incipient noncomformist reform urbanism and historical localism brought about real changes They inspired the 1835 Municipal Corporation Bill and another voluntary reform group, the Healthy Towns Association HTA , created the Public Baths Bill of 1846, the Nuisances Removal Act of the same year, and the Public Health Act fo 1848 all under PM Lord John Russell Later Joseph Chamberlain, once a cordwainer in London, later a successful screw manufacturer in Birmingham, along with allies like dissenter preacher George Dawson, conceived of a new municipal gospel, where the city owned gas and water and other necessities and tried to inspire love of itself The City of Glasgow Improvement Act of 1866 led to the first urban renewal programs, that bulldozed old streets and wynds and later to the first municipally built homes and city owned tramways and led to Octavia Hill and Richard Cross championing the Artisans Home Bill in 1875 and the Housing Act of 1885 Soon cities were building and owning almost every type of industry imaginable, and Fabians like Sidney Webb were championing municipal trading as the pathway to socialism By the turn of the century, municipalities constituted 50% of all government spending in England.Yet the Victorian city dream soon fell apart Developments like Hampstead Garden Suburb championed by macassar oil heiress and settlement house pioneer Henrietta Barnett outside of Eton College, and designed by Ruskianian Garden City architect Raymond Unwin , the spread of suburban Metroland, and the rise again of London as the center of modern life, meant the independent, local, nonconformist cities of the North lost their cachet Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Glasgow and others fell into desuetude as London boomed, and nationalism replaced localism as an ideology.If there is a theme in this morass of names, books, and dates, it is that the Victorian City shocked contemporaries, and led them scurrying into a host of usable pasts, either to reject it or revivify it, which had real effects In any case, the book could have been saved withorganization and editing, but there is much to ponder on here Considering its rave reviews, I found this book rather disappointing Only those who enjoy reading history as a list of white businessmen politicians and the buildings they erected will find something for them in Building Jerusalem The tidbits of biography and historical detail nipped from primary sources are unfortunately too far between, and the meandering structure demands much of the reader to get from oasis to oasis For the casual reader, it s a bit lengthy and its message of the necessit Considering its rave reviews, I found this book rather disappointing Only those who enjoy reading history as a list of white businessmen politicians and the buildings they erected will find something for them in Building Jerusalem The tidbits of biography and historical detail nipped from primary sources are unfortunately too far between, and the meandering structure demands much of the reader to get from oasis to oasis For the casual reader, it s a bit lengthy and its message of the necessity of civic spirit for modern progress, while optimistically driven, is frought with difficulties considering the very limited historical view Hunt has here not to mention saturated in Hunt s own politics And historians can look elsewhere for equally comprehensive, andcritically presented histories of the Victorian city in Hunt s Whiggish style, or on another shelf for awell rounded presentation of the Victorian city in all its facets rather than merely its politics and the top two per cent of its populace Pulling together an extensive array of primary sources, Building Jerusalem charts how the idea of the city developed throughout the Victorian era a truly fascinating and pertinent topic One of the very few criticisms is that, when discussing the opposition to Joseph Chamberlain, Hunt quite suddenly begins using the term conservative to describe Joseph Allday and his Economists who opposed municipal intervention Considering Hunt had defined conservatism and Toryism as essentially anti capit Pulling together an extensive array of primary sources, Building Jerusalem charts how the idea of the city developed throughout the Victorian era a truly fascinating and pertinent topic One of the very few criticisms is that, when discussing the opposition to Joseph Chamberlain, Hunt quite suddenly begins using the term conservative to describe Joseph Allday and his Economists who opposed municipal intervention Considering Hunt had defined conservatism and Toryism as essentially anti capitalist represented by Thomas Carlyle and John Ruskin for the first two thirds of the book, it is frustrating that he fails to explore this specific shift Nonetheless, the eruditeness inherent in Hunt s writing enables him to move with fluidity from the past to contemporary issues, thereby further impressing the ongoing importance of Victorian discourses concerning the city Tristram Hunt, better known as Labour MP and sometimes Guardian columnist, offers a survey of conceptions of the city as it underwent rapid and seismic change in the Victorian era This isn t a timeline history of industrialisation and urbanisation, but an exploration of how both the elite and popular society understood the new urban bohemoths springing up across Britain.The space of a generation saw the greatest shift ever in the way the British lived The new cities and their industries revolu Tristram Hunt, better known as Labour MP and sometimes Guardian columnist, offers a survey of conceptions of the city as it underwent rapid and seismic change in the Victorian era This isn t a timeline history of industrialisation and urbanisation, but an exploration of how both the elite and popular society understood the new urban bohemoths springing up across Britain.The space of a generation saw the greatest shift ever in the way the British lived The new cities and their industries revolutionised how people worked and who they worked for, where and how they lived and who they lived with, how they got around, how and what they ate, what ideas they were exposed to, what opportunities they had for cultural enrichment and hedonistic pleasures, and changes in nearly every other facet of life.These were massive disruptions to traditional notions of the family, the workplace, and the community, and they raised very serious introspection about just what the changes meant for Britain Hunt takes us through what, in very simplistic terms, can be considered the nation s intellectual journey in its understanding of the new industrial cities the deep scepticism of anything urban and in particular the reactionary Young England movement which idealised rural Mideval England themodern scepticism of the slum journalists and fiction writers who equated density and industry with disease and sin the doctors, do gooders, and campaigners informed by either Christian beliefs or a utilitarian commitment to alleviate suffering who tackled those problems the civic fathers who fought the sceptics by turning the city into an attractive and fulfilling place with community groups and intellectual societies as well as public monuments and grand buildings and finally the institutionalisation of this civic pride with the emergence of genuinely local government which embraced an activism that improved housing, built transport and waste infrastructure, and most importantly laid down the foundations for councils which were a force for good in peoples lives.It is through this intellectual journey that the British revamped their cities from the dirty, unhealthy, and over crowded anarchy of the early Victorian era into the clean, rational, and beautiful cities which bequeathed the built environment still enjoy today.The chapter cataloguing Joseph Chamberlain s transformation of Birmingham through his leadership on the council is especially inspiring This is not only a high point in the history, but a high point in the book itself Hunt s discussion of Chamberlain is a well focused narrative which uses one man s story to illustrate a larger trend This engaging style is used throughout, though not always to as clear an effect.Even at their greatest, Victorian cities were still dangerous and unequal places, and the short sighted adoration of anything rural continues to infest British ideas about the right way to live But those of us dedicated to urbanism can t help but feel a pang of envy at the Victorian social ethic We only need compare the cheaply constructed shoeboxes we call public buildings with the sturdy, grand buildings the Victorians erected for their town halls and libraries For all their faults, most Victorians loved their cities and were committed to making them better places We could use a dose of that civic pride today This isn t about the lived reality of Victorian cities but about the ideas informing the shape of the city and how people, especially people of influence, envisioned the city and what it meant to live in one Victorians really believed in the possibilities of urban life and the importance of maintaining, or creating, vibrant city spaces They didn t always succeed to put it mildly , but they thought of cities as exciting places where great things could happen, places that fostered civic involve This isn t about the lived reality of Victorian cities but about the ideas informing the shape of the city and how people, especially people of influence, envisioned the city and what it meant to live in one Victorians really believed in the possibilities of urban life and the importance of maintaining, or creating, vibrant city spaces They didn t always succeed to put it mildly , but they thought of cities as exciting places where great things could happen, places that fostered civic involvement and the healthy interchange of ideas That s a vision of the city we would do well to restore This marvelous history takes us through the low and high points of the development of the British cities of the 19th century The Industrial Revolution greatly expanded the urban population, but also brought with it poverty and dismal living conditions among the new underclass Hunt shows how individuals with a Catholic or Non Conformist background initiated urban reform on a broad scale that included public buildings, city planning, culture and social services It is a fascinating story told wi This marvelous history takes us through the low and high points of the development of the British cities of the 19th century The Industrial Revolution greatly expanded the urban population, but also brought with it poverty and dismal living conditions among the new underclass Hunt shows how individuals with a Catholic or Non Conformist background initiated urban reform on a broad scale that included public buildings, city planning, culture and social services It is a fascinating story told with great enthusiasm, erudition, and wit The author is not afraid to make links to the present and provide lessons for to day and showing that the urban disturbances of 2011 have clear historical antecedents From Manchester s deadly cotton works to London s literary salons, a brilliant exploration of how the Victorians created the modern city Since Charles Dickens first described Coketown in Hard Times, the nineteenth century city, born of the industrial revolution, has been a byword for deprivation, pollution, and criminality Yet, as historian Tristram Hunt argues in this powerful new history, the Coketowns of the s were far than a monstrous landscape of factories and tenements By , than half of Britain s population lived in cities, and even as these pioneers confronted a frightening new way of life, they produced an urban flowering that would influence the shape of cities for generations to come Drawing on diaries, newspapers, and classic works of fiction, Hunt shows how the Victorians translated their energy and ambition into realizing an astonishingly grand vision of the utopian city on a hill the new Jerusalem He surveys the great civic creations, from town halls to city squares, sidewalks, and even sewers, to reveal a story of middle class power and prosperity and the liberating mission of city life Vowing to emulate the city states of Renaissance Italy, the Victorians worked to turn even the smokestacks of Manchester and Birmingham into sites of freedom and art And they succeeded until twentieth century decline transformed wealthy metropolises into dangerous inner cities An original history of proud cities and confident citizens, Building Jerusalem depicts an unrivaled era that produced one of the great urban civilizations of Western history ➷ [Reading] ➹ Gender in Psychoanalytic Space By Muriel Dimen ➬ – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk a brilliant exploration of how the Victorians created the modern city Since Charles Dickens first described Coketown in Hard Times ❴KINDLE❵ ❆ Insight and Interpretation Author Roy Schafer – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk the nineteenth century city ❮Reading❯ ➳ Good People in an Evil Time ➬ Author Svetlana Broz – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk born of the industrial revolution [EPUB] ✵ On a Day Like This By Peter Stamm – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk has been a byword for deprivation ➫ [Ebook] ➦ Heart to Start By Derek Handley ➶ – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk pollution [BOOKS] ⚣ Light without Fire By Scott Korb – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk and criminality Yet [Ebook] ➠ Secrecy By Rupert Thomson – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk as historian Tristram Hunt argues in this powerful new history [KINDLE] ❅ The Silence and the Roar By Nihad Sirees – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk the Coketowns of the s were far than a monstrous landscape of factories and tenements By [PDF / Epub] ★ Hard Country ✈ Robin Robilliard – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk than half of Britain s population lived in cities ➛ [KINDLE] ❅ The Whale Rider By Witi Ihimaera ➥ – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk and even as these pioneers confronted a frightening new way of life ❴PDF / Epub❵ ★ The Impossible David Lynch Author Todd McGowan – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk they produced an urban flowering that would influence the shape of cities for generations to come Drawing on diaries ➞ The Colour Encyclopedia Of Incredible Aeroplanes free download ➣ Author Philip J. Jarrett – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk newspapers [Reading] ➺ Tooth Sleuth, Mystery of the Missing Tooth (Shirley Lock Mysteries By Mia Woolfe – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk and classic works of fiction ❰PDF / Epub❯ ☁ Juno Of Taris Author Fleur Beale – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk Hunt shows how the Victorians translated their energy and ambition into realizing an astonishingly grand vision of the utopian city on a hill the new Jerusalem He surveys the great civic creations ➹ [Read] ➵ The Faithful Scribe By Shahan Mufti ➼ – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk from town halls to city squares [Reading] ➿ Off the Tourist Trail By DK Publishing – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk sidewalks ❮PDF / Epub❯ ✈ One Ball of Yarn ⚣ Author DK Publishing – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk and even sewers [Download] ➶ Optical Illusions Author DK Publishing – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk to reveal a story of middle class power and prosperity and the liberating mission of city life Vowing to emulate the city states of Renaissance Italy ➽ [Reading] ➿ One Million Things By DK Publishing ➲ – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk the Victorians worked to turn even the smokestacks of Manchester and Birmingham into sites of freedom and art And they succeeded until twentieth century decline transformed wealthy metropolises into dangerous inner cities An original history of proud cities and confident citizens ✪ Instruments of Darkness (Crowther and Westerman pdf ✩ Author Imogen Robertson – Ralphslaurensoutlet.co.uk Building Jerusalem depicts an unrivaled era that produced one of the great urban civilizations of Western history I think the title is a mistake a grabber for fans of William Blake and Monty Python, but maybe a turn off for other prospective readers Which is too bad, because the book is unusually lively for a 500 page history of English cities and how they grew Lotsforeign influences than I suspected on the architecture, most intriguingly to me The political ups and downs of Gothic, for instance You have to be ready to skip chunks about things you already know about or don t care about, and ling I think the title is a mistake a grabber for fans of William Blake and Monty Python, but maybe a turn off for other prospective readers Which is too bad, because the book is unusually lively for a 500 page history of English cities and how they grew Lotsforeign influences than I suspected on the architecture, most intriguingly to me The political ups and downs of Gothic, for instance You have to be ready to skip chunks about things you already know about or don t care about, and linger over what is news to you and helps you see new connections Stimulating and enjoyable a great help in understanding the development of our major cities Issues concentrates too much on a few cities Manchester, Birmingham to the exclusion of other provincial towns and cities, and does not spend enough time on London far too hard on suburbs and new towns, which is where most people live, andsignificantly, where they want to live. A lot of interesting info never really went anywhere


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About the Author: Tristram Hunt

Tristram Hunt is the author of Marx s General The Revolutionary Life of Friedrich Engels and Building Jerusalem The Rise and Fall of the Victorian City One of Britain s leading young historians, he writes regularly for The Guardian, The Observer, and The Times, and has broadcast numerous series for the BBC A lecturer in history at the University of London, Hunt represents Stoke on Trent in the British Parliament, where he serves as the education spokesman for the Labour Party.