The modern attitude to children emerged by the late 19th century; the Victorian middle and upper classes emphasized the role of the family and the sanctity of the child, – an attitude that has remained dominant in Western societies ever since. The genre of children’s literature took off, with a proliferation of humorous, child-oriented books attuned to the child’s imagination. Lewis Carroll’s fantasy Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, published in 1865 in England, was a landmark in the genre; regarded as the first „English masterpiece written for children“, its publication opened the „First Golden Age“ of children’s literature.
The latter half of the 19th century saw the introduction of compulsory state schooling of children across Europe, which decisively removed children from the workplace into schools. The market economy of the 19th century enabled the concept of childhood as a time of fun of happiness. Factory-made dolls and doll houses delighted the girls and organized sports and activities were played by the boys. The Boy Scouts was founded by Sir Robert Baden-Powell in 1908,which provided young boys with outdoor activities aiming at developing character, citizenship, and personal fitness qualities.