Social & Industrial History
The Forgotten Children
Fairbridge Farm School and its Betrayal of Britain's Child Migrants
Between 1938 and 1974, thousands of British children were sent to Australia for a better life. Drawing on survivors’ testimonies, this exposé uncovers the grim reality that met them: inadequate education, poor quality food, and physical and sexual abuse.
The Secret World of the Victorian Lodging House
Throughout the burgeoning cities of Victorian Britain, lodging houses provided shelter to those who flocked from the countryside in search of work. Crowded, insanitary and often disreputable, they aroused the horror of respectable society, and were viewed as hotbeds of crime and disease. Drawing on contemporary accounts, newspaper reports and court cases, this fascinating social history shines a light into the shadowy world of itinerant labourers, criminals, street entertainers, peddlers, prostitutes, abandoned children, and families fallen on hard times.
Why the English Sailed to the New World
During the 17th century unprecedented numbers of people left England. They were on their way to new lives in the Caribbean and the North American colonies – but what were their motivations for undertaking such a perilous transatlantic voyage? Using contemporary letters, diaries and court records, Evans tells the personal stories of men and women who left their homeland in search of a fortune, for political and religious reasons or because their desperate poverty meant they had little to lose.
Passage to the World
The Emigrant Experience 1807–1940
From the early 19th century, millions of people crossed the seas to escape war, famine or poverty, or were taken against their will as slaves, convicts or indentured labourers. Drawing on original sources and first-hand accounts, this book examines the transition from one life to another: the decision to emigrate, the journey to the port, the perils of the voyage, and the emigrants' reception in the Americas or Australasia.
Why Did the Chicken Cross the World?
The Epic Saga of the Bird That Powers Civilization
There are currently more than 20 billion chickens on the planet, constituting humanity’s most important source of protein. But how did a humble fowl rise from the thickets of South Asian jungles to a position of such global supremacy? Reframing how we think about all domesticated animals, this history of our relationship with chickens ranges over four continents to trace their vital role in human cultures and the spread of civilization, from ancient Egyptian processions to the latest flu vaccines.
Deer and People
Despite deer being central to human cultures throughout time, from hunter-gatherers to post-medieval deer hunting, this is the first multi-disciplinary volume dedicated to research into human–cervid relationships. Covering Europe, North America and Asia, the 24 essays range from the archaezoology of deer to the image of the courtly huntress, and include studies of dispersal patterns, exploitation, symbolic significance, and effects on landscape and land management.
The Five Giants
A Biography of the Welfare State
Five giants loomed over the reconstruction of postwar Britain: want, disease, ignorance, squalor and idleness. The battle against them was fought by five great programmes at the core of the Welfare State: social security, health, education, housing and full employment. Meticulously researched and vividly written, this award-winning history charts the epic struggle to forge a fair and decent society from the ashes of war, and chronicles the highs and lows of the decades that followed.
All Quiet on the Home Front
An Oral History of Life in Britain during the First World War
First published in 2003, this oral history used interviews with 100 people then in their late nineties, who had lived through the First World War, not as combatants, but as children and young adults on the home front. Their words, along with letters, diary entries and the authors’ linking narrative, offer an unusual view of the war, from fears of the Kaiser’s ambition in the years before its outbreak, to the jubilation, readjustment and mourning following the Armistice.
An Italian Immigrant's Search for Respectability in Victorian Bath
Colin Fisher tells the story of Stefan Vallerio Pieroni (1819–1900), a seller of plaster figurines who came to England from Tuscany in 1837. Eventually, he settled in Bath, where he became prominent in the city’s social, cultural and political life.