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The English Poor Laws 1700-1930 (Social History in Perspective) [Paperback]

Anthony Brundage
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 20.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

31 Oct 2001 Social History in Perspective
The English Poor Laws examines the nature and operation of the English poor law system from the early eighteenth century to its termination in 1930. The book traces the law's development from a localized measure of poor relief designed primarily for rural communities to an increasingly centralized system attempting to grapple with the urgent crises of urban poverty. The deterrent workhouse, medical care, education, assisted emigration, family maintenance, vagrancy and the relationship of the poor laws to private charity are some of the topics covered. The perspectives and reactions of the poor to the workhouse system, as well as to changing relief policies have also been highlighted. This includes the sometimes spirited opposition of the poor to the oppressive features of the law. The relationship of the poor laws to economic development, in both the agrarian and industrial sectors, is also explored, as are the connections of changing relief policies to wider currents of intellectual and social life.

Frequently Bought Together

The English Poor Laws 1700-1930 (Social History in Perspective) + Poverty and Poor Law Reform in Nineteenth-Century Britain, 1834-1914: From Chadwick to Booth (Seminar Studies In History) + Poverty and Welfare in England, 1700-1850 (Manchester Studies in Modern History)
Price For All Three: 55.39

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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (31 Oct 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0333682718
  • ISBN-13: 978-0333682715
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 160,996 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Anthony Brundage has a PhD in History from UCLA and is Professor of History Emeritus at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, London, and a member and former executive officer of numerous professional organizations. He has written six books and hundreds of articles, book reviews, and conference papers. His current book project (together with Richard Cosgrove) is tentatively titled Albion's Modern Chroniclers: The Historical Epic and National Identity from Hume to Churchill. Major avocations are travel, running, and hiking.

Product Description


'...a very useful and concise addition to the literature on the poor laws. It will appeal especially to undergraduate students who should appreciate the emphasis on the varied and contested nature of both history and policy-making.' - Mike McBeth, Journal of Social Policy '...the most comprehensive and succinct introduction to the field currently available.' - Peter Dunkley, Albion

About the Author

Anthony Brundage is Professor of History at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. His books include The Making of the New Poor Law and biographies of Edwin Chadwick and John Richard Green. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and has served as Executive Secretary of the North American Conference on British Studies.

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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This is an easy to read, well organized synthesis of Poor Law literature. The reader will walk away from this book with a good grasp on the basics of the Poor Law (which provided relief to England's destitute from it's earliest incarnation in 1597 to 1930 when it was phased out by alternative social programs). With it's excellent end notes and bibliography, the interested reader will know exactly where to find information for further research. This book is excellent for both the casual reader and the student of history. I highly recommend this book to anyone that is interested in the history of social welfare in England.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This book is highly readable and insightful 28 April 2002
By A Customer
Anthony Brundage's The English Poor Laws 1700 - 1930 is a quick and useful read. The focus on an evolving legal subject in more less modern times gives real insight to the prestages of a welfare state. Suprisingly light, the story manuevers through the Industrial Revolution. The intermingling of politics and intellectual thought provide a detailed case study of the conflicts arising out of a changing socioeconomic climate. It holds interest for anyone interested in history, law, society, and or the current debate on how much socialism to incorporate into a liberal capitalist system. It is short and quick to read.
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