This paper seeks to explore the relationship between urbanization, modernization and the past in England, particularly for the period c. 1700-1900. It does so from a cultural perspective, examining the way that towns looked and were represented, with an emphasis upon the built environment, visual imagery, spectacle and written and printed texts, such as town guides and histories. Modernizing tendencies are examined in the first instance, but then their interplay with the past is explored, for example in the urban use of classical and gothic architecture. The central conclusion of the paper is that modernity and the past, both which agendas English towns pursued vigorously during the period, should be seen not as mutually exclusive categories of experience, but as interconnected and complementary discourses. The evidence suggests that modernization in towns and cities, far from driving out the past, engendered greater dependence upon it.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Revista de Historiografía|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|