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The work of reading
Richard De Ritter

’s thesis. Reading is represented as more than an adjunct to idleness, taking the guise of mental ‘employment’. However, Wollstonecraft gives the impression that such acts of reading are performed not within ‘a routine of work’ but against a backdrop of inactivity and dissipation. The more forcefully she argues against female indolence, and the ‘vice’ and ‘meanness’ to which it leads, the more she emphasises the extent to which it features in women’s lives. Consequently, Wollstonecraft does little to mute the ‘resonant tale’ that associates middle-class women with

in Imagining women readers, 1789–1820
Bill Jones

which voted for it? Experience can be found to support several interpretations but it would seem that, in the wake of a landslide victory, governments assume broad authority to interpret their ‘mandate’ as they think fit. The diminishing influence of class on voting As the country which first experienced the Industrial Revolution, Britain, by the early twentieth century, had a well defined and clearly stratified class system, with working-class people (for the most part, those working with their hands) living in older parts of the big cities and the middle classes

in British politics today
Laura Ugolini

– of his middle-class contemporaries would have agreed with the sentiment.2 And, indeed, thousands of men did just that. By 22 August 1914 more than 100,000 had enlisted.3 The publication of the Mons Despatch in The Times on 25 August, presenting the battle as a ‘heroic defeat’ and ending ‘with an appeal for more men to join up’, provided a new fillip to recruitment: almost 175,000 men enlisted between 30 August and 5 September.4 ‘Sport-mad’ upper- and middle-class men, often – it has been suggested – deeply influenced by a public school ethos of ‘chivalric

in Civvies
The religion of free trade and the making of modern consumerism
Peter Gurney

of the bazaar.9 And more than half a century later, in his monumental biography of John Bright, G. M. Trevelyan similarly noted that the event ‘astonished that simple era with its magnificence and variety, and paved the way for the great Exhibition of 1851’.10 The bazaar should still command our attention, for it simultaneously celebrated and mobilised the changing consumption practices of an increasingly self-confident metropolitan middle class.11 Rather than search for putative origins of consumer culture, this chapter chiefly considers a vital and largely

in Wanting and having
Abstract only
The postwar child in films
Philip Gillett

enforced mingling of the classes (including the appearance of middle-class patients in public assistance institutions after air raids) led to a greater awareness of social inequalities and the inadequacies of welfare provision. 2 The response was a shift to centrally financed services which included school dinners (provided for one in thirty children in 1940, but one in three by 1945), free school milk, National dried milk for babies

in The British working class in postwar film
Populism, New Humour and the male clerk in Marsh’s Sam Briggs adventures
Mackenzie Bartlett

popular Three Men in a Boat: To Say Nothing of the Dog! (1889). This tale of three clerks’ holiday boat trip down the Thames tapped into a newly flourishing market of lower-­ middle-class white-collar consumers who connected personally with Jerome’s protagonists. As Jonathan Wild suggests, ‘[t]he idyll he defines offers the impression of middle-class ease, in a setting and form of transport familiar to, and within reach of, the majority of young clerks in London.’6 Pioneering the New Humourists’ clerk-as-hero motif, Three Men in a Boat depicts clerks as resilient and

in Richard Marsh, popular fiction and literary culture, 1890–1915
New Jerusalem and beyond
John Baxendale

, goods such as cars, refrigerators, washing machines and foreign holidays, previously the preserve of the middle class, became accessible to large numbers of working-class people. The structure of the labour force was 3047 Priestleys England 5/4/07 12:31 Page 177 ‘Now we must live up to ourselves’ 177 also changing, with a shift away from unskilled manual work towards skilled and white-collar occupations, and the education system was expanding to meet this change. To many observers, these developments signalled the decline of class as the key reference-point in

in Priestley’s England
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Fast time and workplace identity
Angela Lait

, but has a lot of responsibility. Where decision-making and risk-taking are devolved downward (in line with the corporate empowerment story) but authority, power and appropriate resources are not, far from feeling newly empowered, employees feel powerless and stressed. Middle-class professionals – especially those in public service who by rank, education and past experience are acculturated to notions

in Telling tales
G. W. M. Reynolds and The Mysteries of London
Rob Breton

Reynolds’s work solely by its differences, both politically and narratologically it occupies a liminal space between Chartist writing and popular fiction, but also between popular fiction and middle-class fiction. I have argued in previous chapters that the penny and Newgate fiction of the 1840s introduces tenets of radicalism, undeveloped inflections of republican propaganda often in the form of folk heroics or in the assertion of agency against both old and new forms of corruption, but that it does so from the ostensibly declaimed side of law and order or only to

in The penny politics of Victorian popular fiction
Allan Blackstock

, the Literary Society’s membership was solidly ‘middle class’, including a medical doctor, James McDonnell, and Henry Joy. The Society was locally orientated and was a voluntary self-regulating body. Its twelve original 134 Richardson.indb 134 10/5/2012 11:35:51 AM Richardson and provincial science members could select new members by ballot. Visitors could be introduced, if they lived within ten miles of Belfast. But it recognised the need for connection to the wider scientific and intellectual world. Joy amended the constitution in December 1801 to allow

in Science, politics and society in early nineteenth-century Ireland