Online Assignment #1: Researching Victorian London


Lee Jackson’s “The Victorian Dictionary” ( compiles 19th century sources–from diaries, newspapers, and novels–and organizes them by topic so researchers can quickly and easily learn about the Victorian period.  Choose a category from the dictionary that has something to do with Victorian London (the category can be as specific as “ladies on trains” (, and write a 300 word blog post on what you’ve learned from that entry.  Your blog post should mention at least three facts from the article and should cite the article to avoid plagiarism. You should also comment on two other blog posts.


August 31st by 8am.


To use “The Victorian Dictionary,” follow these steps:

1. Click on a category on the left (such as “Buildings” or “Districts”).

2. Click on a subcategory on the left to get more options (such as “Marble Arch” or “Character of Particular Streets”)

4. Click on one of the new options to see all articles about that subject.

5. To get the URL for the article, right-click on the topic of the article in the left-hand menu, and select “copy link address” (or “copy link location,” depending on your web browser). Paste the URL into your blog post in parentheses (or turn the quoted text into a hyperlink and paste the URL there).

6. To quote from a source without plagiarizing, consult pages 16-17 from Standards and Styles (

Sample Blog Post:

Using Lee Jackson’s “Victoria Dictionary,” I scoured the articles on bloomerism (also known as women doing tasks and jobs that were considered appropriate for men only). All of the articles were from Punch, a satirical Victorian newspaper, and they all mocked the idea of women having equality with men. The writers attempted to ridicule the idea by drawing pictures and imagining scenarios in which women were engaged in public life, either through their occupation (police officers, polo players, and soldiers) or civil responsibilities (serving on juries). One article also implies that women would be unjust in their new leadership roles because they single-mindedly pursue men: “The governor of the gaol is a female, and, as a matter of course, favours the male prisoners. [I] [a]sked for a book, and was furnished with a work upon Roman Law” (“Rights or Wrongs”). All the articles and illustrations have the same moral, which one states explicitly: “Oh, why did I give up the privileges of a real woman for the miseries of a mock man!” (“Rights or Wrongs”). These satirical articles show the separate roles expected for people in the Victorian period based on their genders: women were expected to stay at home and be decorative, while men had free reign of the public sphere. The authors all assume that women only think that they want equality because they haven’t thought through the implications, and that if women only realize the amount of responsibility true equality would entail, they would give up immediately.

Works Cited

“Rights or Wrongs:  The Diary of a Female of the Future.”  Punch.  Victorian London Dictionary.  Web. 31 August 2015.

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