Description : In this pioneering work Victor Neuberg has assembled a wealth of information about popular literature, from the invention of the printing press to the present. This guide, by judicious selection, gives a vivid picture of the range and variety of popular literature and its producers. Besides describing the main genres, the author has also included the social, cultural and commercial background to the production of popular literature, factors that were crucial in influencing the forms it took.
Description : Drink, 'the curse of Britain', was sweeping the land, or so it seemed to many Englishmen in the early decades of the nineteenth century. They held it responsible for crime, poverty and many other ills of the rapidly industrializing towns. A 'moderation' temperance reform organized in 1829 largely under middle class auspices soon gave way to a radical commitment to total abstinence in a great variety of worker self-help groups. When these too failed to change the drinking habits of most Englishmen the temperance movement sought new alliances. In the 1870s and 1880s Gospel Temperance married temperance to revivalist religion. It received the support of both established and non-conformist churches, and millions 'took the pledge'. But many did not; and as religious enthusiasm faded the anti-drink forces shifted their attention to the political arena. After successfully pressuring the Liberal Party to adopt limited prohibition, they mounted a great but unsuccessful campaign in the 1895 election. With this defeat the anti-drink crusade disintegrated, leaving the dedicated teetotallers socially isolated in the safe haven of their drink-free subculture.
Description : The vibrant Irish public house of the nineteenth century hosted broad networks of social power, enabling publicans and patrons to disseminate tremendous influence across Ireland and beyond. During the period, affluent publicans coalesced into one of the most powerful and sophisticated forces in Irish parliamentary politics. Among the leading figures of public life, they commanded an unmatched economic route to middle-class prosperity, inserted themselves into the centre of crucial legislative debates, and took part in fomenting the issues of class, gender, and national identity which continue to be contested today. From the other side of the bar, regular patrons relied on this social institution to construct, manage and spread their various social and political causes. From Daniel O'Connell to the Guinness dynasty, from the Acts of Union to the Great Famine, and from Christmas boxes to Fenianism; Bradley Kadel offers a first and much-needed scholarly examination of the 'incendiary politics of the pub' in nineteenth-century Ireland.
Description : This book traces the rise and decline of what Theodore Roosevelt once called the "most American thing in America." The Chautauqua movement began in 1874 on the shores of Chautauqua Lake in western New York. More than a college or a summer resort or a religious assembly, it was a composite of all of these—completely derivative yet brilliantly innovative. For five decades, Chautauqua dominated adult education and reached millions with its summer assemblies, reading clubs, and traveling circuits. Scholars have long struggled to make sense of Chautauqua's pervasive yet disorganized presence in American life. In this critical study, Andrew Rieser weaves the threads of Chautauqua into a single story and places it at the vital center of fin de siècle cultural and political history. Famous for its commitment to democracy, women's rights, and social justice, Chautauqua was nonetheless blind to issues of class and race. How could something that trumpeted democracy be so undemocratic in practice? The answer, Rieser argues, lies in the historical experience of the white, Protestant middle classes, who struggled to reconcile their parochial interests with radically new ideas about social progress and the state. The Chautauqua Moment brings color to a colorless demographic and spins a fascinating tale of modern liberalism's ambivalent but enduring cultural legacy.