By Mike Huggins, J. A. Mangan
Many historians have claimed that respectability was once the sharpest line of social department in Victorian society, even that the road among the 'respectable' and 'unrespectable' was once extra major than among wealthy and negative. This irreverent and revisionist assortment argues that they've over-polarised Victorian attitudes and demanding situations the normal view that middle-class Victorian rest had a decent and severe goal and strategy. Disreputable Pleasures explores the extra sinful and unrespectable Victorian male wearing pleasures, demonstrating the complicated interrelationships among such worth as manliness, muscularity and machismo, or sensuality, virility and hedonism. It sheds mild at the ways that the general public rhetoric of Victorian respectability should be rendered frustrating via the sensible pursuit of personal pleasures. It indicates that Victorian relaxation was once even more contested cultural area than has been recognized, a battleground whose contestants ranged from the rational recreationalist to the avowedly hedonistic, and from the sacred to the profane. Disreputable Pleasures poses a robust problem to the authorized public photo of Victorian society and should tremendously upload to our current figuring out of Victorian Britain.
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Additional info for Disreputable Pleasures: Less Virtuous Victorians at Play
He read widely, showing an interest in medicine and a clear aptitude at mathematics. 7 Exams were not compulsory and he took full advantage of this. Grogan was more conscientious at his play: he rowed for a time, played rugby, at which he won his college cap, and proved to be a far from inadequate hammer-thrower. He was no intellectual philistine, however. A popular member of the Cranmer Debating Society, he was already a superb debater. Above all, however, he earned a Cambridge reputation as a renowned practical joker.
He also affected a highly polished satin stock with an iron buckle which fastened it behind, the end sticking out several inches and presenting in the distance a formidable horn or pigtail, and as this from long usage had become much frayed, the boy who sat next to me in school exercised his wit in writing a poem; describing the master’s supposed search through the various shops in the town for a new stock of the same antiquated shape and pattern, describing it as ‘one of the old sort, buckle behind’.
The Deans’ Disciplinary Book for 1853 provides a flavour of student life in college at the time, and makes for lively and, at a distance, amusing reading. One bane of the life of the Junior Dean in the mid-nineteenth century was a student by the name of Acourt, who was admonished on one occasion for a disorderly fencing match in his room after midnight, ‘which made a visit by the Dean necessary’. He was admonished, but to little effect. 12 This time he was ‘gated’ for a fortnight and reported to his tutor.
Disreputable Pleasures: Less Virtuous Victorians at Play by Mike Huggins, J. A. Mangan