Affections and Domesticities
The first section, “Domestic Affections,” offers a glimpse into Victorian courtship and marriage through poetry and prose works that articulate expectations surrounding conjugal relations.
The second section, “Domestic Affairs and Management,” features excerpts from a variety of primary sources including etiquette guides, cookbooks, child-rearing manuals, and sermons. These provide insight into the roles of husbands and wives and the Victorian notion of the idealized innocent child who functions as the center of the family.
The third section, “Domestic Revolts, Refusals, and Hesitations,” uncovers growing discontent with aspects of middle-class family life and traces the emergence of the New Woman, a figure who flouted conventional gender norms and expectations.
Featuring material not available in any single text, Affections and Domesticities is ideal for British literature survey and Victorian literature courses. The nature and subject matter of the readings also make the book suitable for interdisciplinary courses in women's and gender studies and Victorian culture.