The visual culture of reform, 1830–32
in Politics personified
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This chapter examines the visual culture stimulated by the popular fervour for reform, and sheds new light on the making of the 1832 Reform Act and how it was perceived at the time. It focuses on the extraordinarily diverse range of material and visual commodities, including prints, caricatures, ceramics, medals and banners, stimulated by reform, there was not unanimous or uncritical approval. The chapter offers a short overview of the extensive literature on Georgian caricature. It provides an overview of the Reform Act and the reformed political system. The intentions of the framers of 1832 English Reform Act and its impact have remained an enduring source of historical debate. The chapter also focuses on the English reform legislation, there was of course a Scottish and Irish dimension. In terms of increasing the electorate, the Scottish Reform Act was of greater significance than the English measure.

Politics personified

Portraiture, caricature and visual culture in Britain, c. 1830–80

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