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Consumerism in Twentieth-Century Britain
The Search for a Historical Movement

$129.00 (C)

  • Date Published: December 2003
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521831291

$ 129.00 (C)

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About the Authors
  • The first comprehensive history of consumerism as an organized social and political movement, this book explores consumer movements, ideologies and organizations in twentieth-century Britain. It explores the history of organizations such as the Co-operative movement and the Consumers' Association and analyzes the role of the National Consumer Council, the Office of Fair Trading, and international consumer organizations as well as the growth of ethical consumerism. A major contribution to the topic of the role of consumption in modern society, it will be essential reading for historians of twentieth-century Britain.

    • The first comprehensive history of consumerism as an organised social and political movement
    • Examines the history of the Co-operative movement, the Consumers' Association, the National Consumer Council, the Office of Fair Trading as well as international consumer organisations
    • Contributes to an expanding inter-disciplinary discussion of the role of consumption in modern society
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "This is a hugely impressive study." EH.NET, Lawrence Black, Department of History, University of Durham, UK

    "Moving beyond moral condemnation and class, Hilton provides a meticulously researched analysis of twentieth-century consumerism that should appeal to the specialist and to those interested in British politics, broadly defined." Albion, Lori Loeb

    "Empirically rich and coneptually challenging, it confirms the need to incorporate consumption and consumerism into the proper analysis of nineteenth- and twentieth-century Britain. Business historians, along with other scholars, will need to take note." Business History Review John Benson, University of Wolverhampton

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    Product details

    • Date Published: December 2003
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521831291
    • length: 396 pages
    • dimensions: 236 x 160 x 30 mm
    • weight: 0.746kg
    • contains: 6 b/w illus.
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: luxury's shadow
    Part I. Necessity:
    1. Socialism, cooperation, free trade and fair trade: the politics of consumption in the nineteenth century
    2. Revolutionary shoppers: the Consumers' Council and scarcity in World War I
    3. The right to live: consumer 'ideology' in inter-war Britain
    4. The price of depression: consumer politics after World War I
    5. Austerity to affluence: the twilight of the politics of necessity
    Part II. Affluence:
    6. The new consumer: good housewives and enlightened businessmen
    7. The professionals: the origins of the organised consumer movement
    8. Individualism enshrined: the state and the consumer in the 1960s
    9. The right to shop: consumerism and the economy
    10. The duty of citizens: consumerism and society
    11. Affluence or effluence: globalisation and ethical consumerism
    Conclusion: the quantity or the quality of choice.

  • Author

    Matthew Hilton, University of Birmingham
    Matthew Hilton is Lecturer in Modern British History at the University of Birmingham and the author of Smoking in British Popular Culture, 1800–2000 (2000).

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