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The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes (Yale Nota Bene) Paperback – 11 Oct 2002

4.4 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Paperback, 11 Oct 2002
£262.99 £5.95
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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; New edition edition (11 Oct. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300098081
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300098082
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 3.2 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,436,181 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"A magnificent book ... a work of truly human imagination ... deeply inspiring." -- Anthony Daniels, Sunday Telegraph

"It is hard to stress how important this book is." -- Economist

"Rose shows that there was a time when the most elite and difficult works of the Western tradition inspired neither snobbery nor shame." -- Edward Rothstein, New York Times

"a book of major significance for British social history and a troubling text for anyone concerned about the destiny of British society." -- Paul Smith, Times Literary Supplement

"a historical triumph ... fascinatingly and passionately told." -- A. C. Grayling, Independent on Sunday

"immensely readable" -- Ian Jack, Observer, Books of the Year

"sharply original ... Rose rediscovers a tradition of self-education which recent academic cultural criticism has tended to devalue." -- Economist, Books of the Year

"superb book ... lastingly moving" -- Christopher Hitchens, The Times

'Universally, and rightly, lauded in hardback, Roses's panoramic and moving history of the autodidact tradition illuminates a vanished past'. -- The Independent Magazine, 23 November 2002


This text traces the rise and decline of the British autodidact from the pre-industrial era to the 20th century. Using research techniques and a vast range of unexpected sources such as workers' memoirs, social surveys and library registers, Jonathan Rose seeks to answer such questions as which books people read, how and why they educated themselves, and what they knew. In the process this account of the life of the mind reveals much about working-class politics, ideology, popular culture and social relationships.

22 customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

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