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on 3 January 2001
Young and Willmotts book is based on a three study of the Bethnal Green area of London - a traditional industrial working class community. Whilst they combine classic social science methodologies employing structured surveys, interviews and observation, the book reads not as as a study but a narrative.
Drawing their evidence from all areas together ina seamless manner the paint a picture of ife in Bethnal Green where the extended family and wider community are very much part of the individuals life. The role of the mother is especially central representing the key binding force in family life .
The picture is of a happy community, where material wealth is yet to overturn community spirit as the key value.
A section analyses life in a recently created out-of-town estate where many from Bethnal Green have moved to - the authors suggest that the move shows how easy it is to break up a successful organic community and despite the better material quality of life that teh estate represented the overall quality of life was severly diminished.
This book is academic in its basis but is written for the general reader. Anyone interested in social history, community life or Britain would love the book. For the academic there is a lengthy appendix which provides all the details of methodology leaving the book open to necessary academic critique. The average reader can and will ignore this.
Some have criticised the book as romanticising working class life, and it is perhaps the case but definitely the title paints a picture that is hard to ignore.
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on 25 January 2010
This book was recommended as part of a further reading during my criminology degree and it has proved very usefull, the book itself is very small so if you have problems reading small text then I would recommend looking for a larger print option if is avalable.

The book itself provides both qualitative and quantiative evidence surrounding the life of individuals living in the Bethenal Green area and those who were relocated to a 'new town' in the 1950's era. The book explains the family values of individuals and how the family set up was a very close bond. Statistics are used for several points which seem to reinforce the statements and suggestions of the authors. The book also covers impact factors to families such as insecurities about poverty, multi child households, decent accomodation, and immigration.

Whilst this book has a very academic feel to it and seems to be written for the academic in mind, I have also enjoyed reading this book for fun. The build quality of the book is good and it has already withstood me bending the book in half, leaving several pages of notes and being battered in my school bag.
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on 5 February 2013
This book is very enjoyable (and as a dyslexic, surprisingly easy) to read and should be recommended reading for everyone!

However if you are buying this book for academic reasons please don't get the new edition (the one with the white and silver stripes at the bottom of the front cover) as it doesn't contain the appendix with the in-depth details about how the study was conducted.

It was such a shame that the appendix wasn't included. If it was it would of been by far the best edition to buy.
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on 27 September 2015
A fascinating study which has helped me understand my parents and grandparents, who were not part of this study but were the peers of those who were studied. Specifically about Bethnal Greeners and those who were re-housed in Essex in the early 1950s. This is definitely a published research project, not a "reading book", but is very readable.
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on 3 April 2013
I am a sociology student and would recommend to anyone doing this course to purchase this book the information within it is so useful
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on 25 December 2015
Book inngood condition only issue label I easily removed on front cover
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on 23 October 2015
Excellent. A true timeless classic.
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on 22 September 2011
a very interesting book, but I found that it was quite specific and detailed. It would be fantastic for anyone studying or deeply interested in sociology, however as I am more of a historian (preferring medieval history) I found it boring at some points. However, there were still many fascinating parts.
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on 9 June 2010
This came on the Wednesday, one of my students Borrowed it on the Thursday, and I have not seen it since!!! Excellent book!
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on 4 April 2010
Following a television programme this book was purchased for a friend who found it very interesting
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