Book Set #10 Revealed – Society in Western Culture

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Book Set 10 - Society in Western Culture

The Age of Enlightenment (approximately 1650 AD to 1800 AD) and the Victorian Era that followed it (much of the nineteenth century) were transformative to Western culture. In many ways, these two eras define the West. It should come as no surprise, then, that a large portion of the candidate list hails from this time period.

In this tenth set of books in The Well-Read Man Project, the focus is on books that were written during or about this important time in history, and that address issues of relevance in an age of Western enlightenment. (Click on a book to access its detail page.)

Book 35
The Vicar of Wakefield
by Oliver Goldsmith
Book 36
Ivanhoe
by Sir Walter Scott
Book 37
Wuthering Heights
by Emily Brontë
Book 38
Vanity Fair
by William Makepeace Thackeray
Book 39
Middlemarch
by George Eliot
Book 40
Possession
by A. S. Byatt

Most of the books focus on families or communities in Europe, the epicenter of Enlightenment and Victorian events. Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe, while written in the nineteenth century, plays out its storyline in twelfth-century England. Possession, by A. S. Byatt, also looks back, this time to the Victorian age from its twentieth-century vantage point.

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