Suggested Writing Assignments and Classroom Discussion
What were the most important consequences of industrialization and urbanization in Europe during the nineteenth century? Referring to specific examples from the Evidence section, discuss the way in which Europeans responded to such changes in their world.
Compare the critical view of nature and the urban world in the writings of Gaskell and Tocqueville and the cartoon The Smellswith the more ambivalent messages in cartoons such as Momentous Question, Back to the Land, and Logical. Identify key elements in each text or image that express the contrasting perspectives. To what extent do you think the differences were the result of subject matter, genre, or political perspective?
To what extent do the tensions between urban landscapes and perceptions of nature persist in the contemporary world? Write a short essay or draw a cartoon that expresses a particular point of view of some aspect of this relationship in your own world.