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"The Victorian Frame of Mind"
Walter E. Houghton
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1. Character of the Age
The State of Society
The State of the Human Mind
PART I: EMOTIONAL ATTITUDE
Reconstruction and History:
Two Utopians of Science
Applied Science and Bigger Business
Liberation from the Burdens of the Past
Fear of Revolution
The Danger of Atheism
Worry and Fatigue
The Strain of Puritanism
Ennui and Doubt
Isolation, Loneliness, and Nostalgia
PART II: INTELLECTUAL ATTITUDES
4. The Critical Spirit--and the Will to Believe
Rise of the Critical Spirit
The Will to Believe
Recoil to Authority
Reliance on Authority
Democracy, Evangelicalism, and Doubt
Opportunity for the Ego
The Rationale of Infallibility
The Attraction of Dogmatism
The Need for Rigidity
The Open and Flexible Mind
PART III: MORAL ATTITUDES
8. The Commercial Spirit
The Bourgeois Dream
9. The Worship of Force
Machines and Men
The Major Prophet
Darwinism, Chauvinism, Racism
Moral Earnestness and the Religious Crisis
Moral Earnestness and the Social Crisis
Idealism and the Education of the Feelings
Sympathy and Benevolence
Aspiration without an Object
12. Hero Worship
Home, Sweet Home
SYNOPSIS: In order to write believable fiction, it is necessary to know your characters. What is their background? What are their moral beliefs? What was their religious upbringing? All these, and more, affect the way they will act and react to any given situation in your novel. This is much easier in contemporary settings because we are living in the social attitudes of the day. To write historicals, however, one must know how the Victorian mind thought. How the Victorian mind was shaped by social mores of the day. This book is an excellent reference on the topic. You can learn how the Victorians lived and how their outside world influenced their lives. A great resource for digging deep into your characters.
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