Inside the Victorian Home

Inside the Victorian Home
by Judith Flanders

I love history and I am extremely detail oriented. So, needless to say, this book was definitely right up my alley!

This was the first book assigned in my Gender and Sexuality in Victorian Literature course. A little dense? Yes. A little too many specifics? Maybe. A lack of explaining who Flanders is talking about? Absolutely. Interesting? Extremely so!

This book is organized as a sort of walking tour through a Victorian home. We begin in the bedroom, mosey to the nursery, amble down to the kitchen... you get the idea. Not only did it paint a vivid picture of the interior of a home, but the book also dove right into Victorian culture and how freaking contradictory it was!

Your house is a symbol of your class but also your morality. Your house should be decorated to the current fashion- but don't look like you tried too hard! Your house should not be plain but too much detail hinted that you were a base sort of person. Everything had to be just right- like no mirrors on the mantel that were wider than they were tall- which apparently was the sign of the devil or something. It doesn't really make any sense but it was definitely interesting.

Every room has one function and one function only. Do not DARE do work in your bedroom. Do not DARE sleep on the sofa. Do not DARE poop in the kitchen.

Victorians were all about segmentation and classification. And dust. Let's not forget the constant dust and quack medical devices.

If you are at all interested in the details of Victorian domestic life (which I never thought I was but apparently am) check it out!

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