Review: How to be a Victorian: A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide to Victorian Life, by Ruth Goodman

Goodman covers all aspects of a Victorian day from waking up and through the entire day as a framework to discuss 19th century British life in all strata of society. She discusses clothing, sports, entertainment, work, school, food and other topics. I found her discussion of the various Victorian recipes, medicines, cleaning product formulas and clothing that she actually made and tried out most interesting. On a more somber note, Goodman concludes that except for the upper classes, many people were underfed and hungry for most of their lives. This did improve near the end of the Victorian era when social conditions, including the rise of the labor movement, started to change for the better for the poor.

RATING: * * * * Very, very good

Reviewed by: kh

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