Published in 1832, Illustrations of Political Economy established Harriet Martineau as both a successful and controversial author and a pioneer of nineteenth-century "social problem" writing. This widely read series of didactic stories popularized political economy, making it accessible to audiences by vividly dramatizing issues such as overpopulation and labour strikes. Illustrations of Political Economy marks a pivotal moment in which literature and politics came together, laying the foundation for the realism and social commentary of later Victorian novels. This Broadview edition contains a critical introduction and a rich selection of historical documents, including contemporary reviews of Illustrations and writings on population growth, factory conditions, and working-class life.
Martineau's classic American travel narrative has long been unavailable. This new abridgment of the original 1838 edition offers an unsurpassed firsthand view of Jacksonian America. Here are Martineau's penetrating condemnation of slavery and her championship of abolition and women's rights; her incisive portraits of Jackson, Clay, Calhoun, Webster, Garrison, Emerson, and the Beechers; her critical observations of American schools, asylums, colleges, and prisons; and more. Historian Daniel Feller, author of The Jacksonian Promise, introduces the narrative, identifies the major characters, and provides an index for easy use.
When the Ibbotson sisters, Hester and Margaret, arrive at the village of Deerbrook to stay with their cousin Mr Grey and his wife, speculation is rife that one of them might marry the local apothecary Edward Hope. Although he is immediately attracted to Margaret, Hope is ultimately persuaded to marry the beautiful Hester. The unhappiness of their marriage is compounded when a malicious village gossip accuses Hope of grave-robbing.
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Harriet Martineau brought to her observations the convictions of a vehement English liberal and an astonishingly modern sociological approach. In 1834 she wrote the first draft of How to Observe Manners and Morals--perhaps the earliest book on the methodology of social research. In abridging the 800-page original for the modern reader, Lipset has concentrated on Martineau's brilliant discussion of religious practices, social status, and childrearing; political apathy and the position of women, blacks, and immigrants; and the American's casual approach to indebtedness and his speculative wealth-or-ruin schemes.