Friday, July 25, 2008

The Myth of the Victorian Patriarchal Family

if anyone is interested, I would like to recommend the following ...

The myth of the Victorian patriarchal family, by Eleanor Gordon (a Department of Economic and Social History, University of Glasgow, 4 University Gardens, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland, UK) and Gweneth Nair (Department of Applied Social Studies, University of Paisley, Paisley UK)

It has been available online 22 January 2002

The Abstract on this study is as follows ...

Conventionally, the Victorian middle-class family has been regarded as a social and economic unit usually headed by a married man. The woman's role within this unit has been associated with service and dependency.

However, a study of a middle-class area of Glasgow based upon the census returns of 1851–1891 suggests that the widely held image of the Victorian middle-class family as headed by a paterfamilias may be misplaced. The high incidence of female-headed households and the range of kin, both male and female, which they contained, indicate the diversity of experience among middle-class women, the degree of their social and residential independence, and, thus, the dangers of viewing women's lives through the filter of Victorian domestic ideology.

again ... this whole myth around a woman and her role in the Victorian Era is simply that ... a myth ... it never existed
I can give several examples from my own family and that of my husband's family during the Victorian Era that dispel these myths ... these women were NOT that unusual ...
~ from the notes of Lady Victorian Historian