Uneasy Neighbours?: Rural-Urban Relationships in the Nineteenth Century
An International Interdisciplinary Conference
20 September 2013
Keynote Speaker: Keith D.M. Snell,
The relationship between urban and rural communities in the nineteenth century was increasingly strained by the unprecedented rate and scale of social, industrial, technological and economic change worldwide. Cities demanded ever more from agriculture, while rural populations decreased; country life and work were changed by mechanisation and industrialisation, while newcomers to the cities had to adjust to alien ways of living and conditions of employment; poverty was commonplace in both the countryside and the cities, while the newly wealthy became landowners and urban leaders. This 1-day interdisciplinary conference aims to consider evidence of the tensions, anxieties and experiences resulting from the changing dynamic between rural and urban life, to examine how this shaped the perceptions of the country and the city, and
to explore how these are articulated in different global contexts.
Suggested topics might include (but are not limited to): The rival attractions of rural and urban living; the rise of the suburb; changing ideals of national identity; representations of rural/urban
life and work in art, literature and science; women’s lives and work in the country and city; rural and urban health/wealth/poverty; utopianism; urban/rural perspectives in the contemporary press; the role and influence of religion; landowners, businessmen and entrepreneurs; the lives of children; philanthropy; the greening of the city (garden cities); industrialisation of the countryside. Abstracts (200 words) for proposed 20 minute papers to be submitted by e-mail to W.B.Sloan@soton.ac.uk and E.M.Hammond@soton.ac.uk by 2 April 2013.