Queen Victoria’s Children

In the 1840s Prince Albert reinvented the Hanoverians as ‘the royal family’, an exemplary, idealised family enthusiastically followed by the growing British middle classes. The course explores the attitudes of ‘the Victorians’ to family roles using Queen Victoria’s nine children as examples.  It analyzes the interesting interaction of family and court culture as each developed in the second half of the nineteenth century.

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Course outline

The course explores the attitudes of ‘the Victorians’ to family roles using Queen Victoria’s nine children as examples.  It analyzes the interesting interaction of family and court culture as each was reinvented in the second half of the nineteenth century.

The four two-hour sessions cover the following topics:

  1. The invention of the ‘Royal Family’ and the roles of the eldest children, Vicky and Bertie.
  2. ‘Service and survival’; the middle children.
  3. Queen Victoria as mother and widow.  The problematic uses of emotional power.

Too many children? The unravelling of some of the controlling ideas by the turn of the century and a look at some of the grandchildren.

Learning outcomes

Learners will have an enhanced knowledge of ‘Victorian’ ideas about family roles and responsibilities; they will be able to more critically consider the practical application of such tropes in individual lives.

They will have greater understanding of recent historical writing in the area of family histories and biographies and this might assist researchers into family history to engage more creatively with the results of their research.

Who should attend?

Mature adults who want to increase their knowledge of nineteenth and early twentieth century European history.  People with an interest in social,family and political history. It might assist researchers into their own family history to engage more creatively with the results of their research.

Potential university students who wish to have a ‘taste’ of university experience before embarking on a degree programme.

Details

  • 4 Thursdays, 8 October - 29 October, 11:00am- 1:00pm
  • $185.00 incl. GST
  • The University of Auckland, City Campus
  • Presented by Judith Bassett

Seminar presenter

Judith Bassett

Judith Bassett

Judith taught Early Modern European History at The University of Auckland for many years. She is a graduate of the University of Auckland in History and Law. Her interest in European History includes Russia and France as well as a deep appreciation of the court culture of England in the 16th and 17th centuries and the popular culture of England in that time.

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