Thinking Allowed

BBC Radio 4

Wednesday 21 Jan 09

Victorian Light

TA: Hole in the wall and Gaslight When gaslight first brought illumination to Britain’s city streets people said night had been turned into day, but after the initial hyperbole had died down did it lead to a new type of social control? Laurie discusses the politics of gaslight with Chris Otter and Lynda Nead

“Imagine the impact of gaslight on the once dark nights of Victorian Britain..“As I walk about the streets by night, endless and always suggestive intercommunings take place between me and the trusty, silent, ever watchful gas.  Gas to teach me; gas to counsel me; gas to guide my footsteps, not over London flags, but through the crooked ways of unseen life and death”, that was George Augustus Sala in 1859.”

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