Historical Context in Afterward
”Old World” England vs. “New World” America: The Gilded Age, a period of economic prosperity coupled with social upheaval and inequality, was a period in American history beginning around the 1870s and continuing until the turn of the century. Though some, like the Boynes, became wealthy during this period, the country as a whole suffered from extreme income inequality. While America was seen as a progressive nation, workers’ and women’s rights being popular topics, England was viewed as having a comparatively more conservative culture during its equivalent Victorian era despite also becoming more liberal. Americans tended to value the fictionalized version of Europe over its reality, which wasn’t as paradisiacal as they hoped.