Consuming Angels: Advertising and Victorian Women

Hardcover (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $39.99
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 68%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (14) from $39.99   
  • New (8) from $82.30   
  • Used (6) from $39.99   


Timid and retiring, the Victorian housewife was an "angel in the house," or so says the stereotype. But when this angel picked up a popular magazine—The Lady, for instance—she saw in its advertisements images of Grecian goddesses, women warriors, queens, actresses, adventurers. These arrestingly sexual and surprisingly powerful images are the subject of Consuming Angels, a major examination of how Victorian ads shaped social values. Stylishly written and featuring 73 reproductions, this book shows how ads used the hedonistic aspects of Victorian culture to sell their wares, glorified consumerism, and mythologized the middle-class life. Images of aggressive women, Loeb shows, played well to both men and women. And ultimately, these ads helped usher in the twentieth century with the creation of a new community: the community of consumers.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The subject of this wonderfully illustrated book goes to the heart of modern life, the establishment of the ethos of consumption (in England) and the necessary role played in it by women. Loeb shows how the home, already transformed by mid-Victorian evangelicalism into a "domestic temple" presided over by feminine virtue, was easily altered by advertisers into the locus of gracious middle-class consumption managed by an equivalent feminine presence."—The Boston Sunday Globe

"Loeb's argument about the impact of consumerism on women's status is most compelling....Fascinating and richly illustrated, this work is a welcome addition to social and women's history."—Choice

"An excellent reading for my course sermon on women as consumers. Great analysis of images within their historical contect."—Deborah I. Prosser, SUNY at Oneonta

"A superb introduction to an advertising mentality which presumably led to the successful marketing of products in an age of rapidly growing consumerism."—The Historian

"This is the first time that advertising has been taken apart and examined in this way, and [the book] is a solid starting point from which to study advertising in Victorian Britain."—Victorian Periodicals Review

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195085969
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 7/28/1994
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 240
  • Lexile: 1340L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.37 (w) x 9.56 (h) x 0.77 (d)

Meet the Author

Lori Anne Loeb is Assistant Professor of Modern British History at the University of South Carolina.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

1 Victorian Consumer Culture 3
2 Commercial Interpretations of the Domestic Ideology 16
3 Progress in the Victorian Advertisement: Productive Engines and Consuming Conflagrations 46
4 Heroes for Sale 72
5 Anxiety in the Victorian Advertisement: Evangelical Forms and Material Deliverers 100
6 Community and the Individual 128
7 Social Emulation and Mass Consumption: Elitism or Material Democratization? 158
8 Conclusion 180
Notes 185
Bibliography 203
Index 219
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 1
( 1 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)