Pleasure WarsThe author summarizes the interior life and mentality of the nineteenth century, uncovering the roots of modernism and revealing a hitherto hidden side of the Victorian era. The fifth and final volume of THE BOURGEOIS EXPERIENCE: VICTORIA TO FREUD, the author's study of the nineteenth century.
by Peter Gay
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Pleasure Wars Summary
Peter Gay's "The Bourgeois Experience: Victoria to Freud" has had a great effect on the thinking about the 19th century as a whole and particularly about its dynamo - the middle classes. Gay summarizes the interior life, the mentality of the 19th century. In uncovering the roots of modernism, he shows us a hidden side of the Victorian era. The Victorians we meet in this volume are not the stodgy, complacent characters of drawing room comedy. They are instead a varied crowd, from the capitalists in the top tier of the bourgeoisie, eager to be recognized as gentlemen or, better yet, dubbed as nobility, to those at the bottom of the pile, the clerks and craftsmen mortally afraid of sinking into the mass of the proletariat. What they share is an anxiety, driven by their concern to advance up the social pyramid or at least to maintain the status they have achieved.
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