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HIS102Y1 Lecture Notes - Broad Group, Aristocracy, The Great Exhibition

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Sarah Amato

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Lecture 1 Sept 13
Frameworks - 19th Century Britain
-United Kingdom, Act of Union 1801
-Wales (1535, 1543)
-Scotland (1707)
-Ireland (1800)
-Parliamentary System
-Class System
-Peers/Gentry, Middle Class, Working Class
-2nd Wave Empire (1870+)
-Workshop of the World
-Great Exhibition of Art and Industry of All Nations (1851) or Crystal Palace Exhibition
"Land of yobs and morons? Britain's search for a motto sheds light on the national mood" Globe and Mail, 12 Nov, 2007
1. Pride in democratic identity and political institutions
2. Uncertainty regarding Britain's position vis-a-vis America and Europe
3. Nostalgia for Empire
4. Anti-immigrant and/or anti-devolution
5. Humour about culture of drinking and weird politeness
Union of the UK
UK population in 1801: 15,972, 000
-England led UK culture, population, was the epicentre in 1801, economically dominates rest of the union
-economic and political pre-eminence of London
-sense that all of UK should follow England
1535 and 1543 - Wars of England and Wales, union of Wales with England
-Welsh maintained distinct identity from the British; exemplified by Welsh language itself, which remains strong
-fairly strong ties to England, nonetheless; Welsh are religiously similar, protestant; Wales is coal-producing, strong
affinities between Welsh and British coal workers, develop unions and strong ties later in the 19th century; solidifies
importance of Wales to England, bond between English and Welsh working classes
-Scotland joins England and Wales in 1707, remains distinct in a few ways: legal system, educational system, religion
(dominance of Presbyterianism in Scotland), tremendous resistance, particularly in the highlands, of joining with
England; series of wars in the 1700s in which this resistance is quashed; affinities also involving coal mines
-Ireland is different; incorporation of Ireland in 1800; Irish discontent, fear of fifth column element amongst Irish in their
alliance with Catholic France spurred union with the rest of Britain; need formal strong tie between England in particular
with Ireland - union is unhappy from the beginning due to tremendous differences in wealth, distributions of wealth in
Ireland, i.e. landowners are mainly Anglican, strongly identify with Britain, but also entire peasant class who are Catholic
-1801 formation of UK in the midst of Napoleonic war; after 1815, Britain emerges out of wars with revolutionary France
quite unscathed
-Britain economically in debt, lots of restructuring, but Britain has class structure and government structure still in tact,
which was quite remarkable for what occurred and what would be occurring in the future - Britain remains relatively
stable throughout 19th century, which is an anomaly
British Parliamentary System
Composed of three components: monarchy, house of commons, house of lords
-Britain does not have a written constitution - instead Britain has a system governed by precedence, but no formal
written documents
-law governed by precedence
-government composed of three parts, evolving into a constitutional monarchy/crown monarchy
-role of monarchy is evolving in the 19th century; monarch King George III (1760-1820) followed by Victoria in 1837 -
monarchy had political power, but very little
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