The English Countryside between the Wars

The English Countryside between the Wars

Regeneration or Decline?

Edited by Paul Brassley, Jeremy Burchardt, Lynne Thompson

Hardback
$99.00

Boydell Press

Overview

Overview

A revisionist look at the true state of rural England between the two world wars.
"England is the country, and the country is England", as Stanley Baldwin famously said in 1924, but what kind of country was it? There are persistent memories of depression and depopulation, of dilapidated villages and deserted country houses, in a period of bitter discontent and disturbance when the brief febrile excitements of the 1920s gave way to the thirties, Auden's "low dishonest decade".
Recent work has radically modified the history of the interwar years, but largely from an urban and industrial viewpoint. Hitherto this revisionist perspective has left unquestioned one of the central components of the old orthodoxy: that this was a period of unremitting, unmitigated decline in the countryside. In The English Countryside Between the Wars an interdisciplinary group of scholars have come together to challenge this view. Organised into sections on society, culture, politics and the economy, and embracing subjects as diverse as women novelists and village crafts, the book argues that almost everywhere we look in the countryside between the wars there were signs of new growth and dynamic development. This will be required reading for everyone with an interest in British history between the wars and to lecturers, teachers and students studying social, cultural, political, economic and environmental history, historical and cultural geography, English literature, performance studies and art and design history.

Contributors: ALUN HOWKINS, CAITLIN ADAMS, MARION SHAW, MARK RAWLINSON, MICK WALLIS, DAVID JEREMIAH, CHRISTOPHER BAILEY, JOHN SHEAIL, CLARE GRIFFITHS, NICHOLAS MANSFIELD, ROY BRIGDEN

Details

October 2006
16 black and white illustrations
280 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
ISBN: 9781843832645
Format: Hardback
Boydell Press
BIC HBLL
BISAC HIS015000
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Table of Contents

Death and Rebirth? English Rural Society 1920-1940 - Alun J Howkins
`A New Rural Civilization': Village Halls, Community and Citizenship in the 1920s - Jeremy Burchardt
Rural Education and Reform Between the Wars - Caitlin Adams
Agricultural Education in the Interwar Years - Lynne Thompson
Cold Comfort Times: Women Writers in the Interwar Period - Marion Shaw
Dead Chickens: Henry Williamson, British Agriculture and European War - Mark Rawlinson
Drama in the Villages: Three Pioneers - Mick Wallis
Dartington Hall: A Landscape of an Exceptional Experiment in Rural Reconstruction - David Jeremiah
Rural Industries and the Image of the Countryside - Christopher Bailey
Agriculture in the Wider Perspective - John Sheail
Farming in the Public Interest: Constructing Agriculture on the Political Left - Clare Griffiths
Farmworkers, Local Identity and Conservatism, 1914-1930 - Nicholas Mansfield
British Farming Between the Wars - Paul Brassley
Leckford: A Case Study of Interwar Development - Roy Brigden
The Wheelwright, the Carpenter, Two Ladies from Oxford, and the Construction of Socio-Economic Change in the Countryside Between the Wars - Paul Brassley

Reviews

Recommended. CHOICE
Future generations will find this volume of seminal importance in the writing, rewriting, and reshaping of interwar rural history. (...) The editors are to be congratulated on a most commendable and well-executed initiative. ECONOMIC HISTORY REVIEW
This is an excellent volume, which opens up a vital new area of historical enquiry, and yet at the same time manages to provide a general overview of the period, one which is unlikely to be superseded for many years. It should be essential reading for all those in the history of the countryside in the twentieth century. RURAL HISTORY
Provides a rich set of studies broadening our understanding of rural life in the period. TWENTIETH CENTURY BRITISH HISTORY
(A) fascinating and welcome volume. (...) The editors have produced an innovative and important book which will stimulate new research in the inter-war English countryside. HISTORY

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