"Sexuality in the Victorian Era"

Essay by alimanHigh School, 12th gradeA-, January 2003

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In the early 1800's, Great Britain began to colonize new undiscovered land. It was in these new found areas of the world where the British began to spread their way of life. Protestant sexual mores had spread across Britain creating a society of little, if any, sexual openness. Britain became primarily Protestant and mores such as chastity or abstinence as well as sex with only one partner and other strict rules involving the roles of women were adopted. These sexual mores had a negative impact on many societies in the 1800's. The criminalization of some sexual behavior had a harmful influence on men because it repressed a basic human necessity and thus created a crisis. The situation led to the escalating anger of men which then led to a demand from men for dominance, power and control. This resulted in the repression of women. The British then forced their colonies to conform to the "Protestant Work Ethic" enforcing the same sexual mores.

Some may say that the sexual mores the British followed in the Victorian era had a positive impact on the society. Some may suggest that Britain led the world with a strong monarch, well-built economy and eventually the greatest number of colonies. The "protestant work ethic"; no nonsense, tough way of life which incorporated the Protestant values, was the reason that Britain was able to grow as much as they did and impact the world as strongly as they had. This will be proven incorrect. For the purpose of this essay human nature will be referring to what is considered human nature in the 21st century. Undiscovered land is land which had not been found by the Europeans. The Protestant work ethic is a belief that work has moral value and each person is responsible for themselves. This...