Entrepreneurial Politics in Mid-Victorian Britain

Hardcover | October 1, 1986

byG. R. Searle

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Historians have long debated the issue of why Britain did not experience a `middle-class revolution'. In the mid-Victorian years, in the aftermath of the Great Reform Act and the repeal of the Corn Laws, it seemed that a decisive shift of power from the aristocracy to the middle class mighttake place. In this perceptive and original book, G. R. Searle shows how many MPs from business backgrounds, the so-called 'entrepreneurial Radicals', came to Westminster determined to impose their own values and priorities on national life. Some wanted to return public manufacturing establishments to privateownership; others hoped to create an 'educational market'. Nearly all of them worried about how best to safeguard the truths of political economy should the franchise be extended to the propertyless masses. Their partial successes and many failures helped determine the political culture of modernBritain.

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Historians have long debated the issue of why Britain did not experience a `middle-class revolution'. In the mid-Victorian years, in the aftermath of the Great Reform Act and the repeal of the Corn Laws, it seemed that a decisive shift of power from the aristocracy to the middle class mighttake place. In this perceptive and original b...

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Historians have long debated the issue of why Britain did not experience a 'middle-class revolution'. In the mid-Victorian years, in the aftermath of the Great Reform Act and the repeal of the Corn Laws, it seemed that a decisive shift of power from the aristocracy to the middle class might take place. In this perceptive and original b...

G. R. Searle is at University of East Anglia.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:354 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.91 inPublished:October 1, 1986Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198203578

ISBN - 13:9780198203575

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`In this finely crafted work, G. R. Searle offers an insightful analysis of English politics from the perspective of the "entrepreneurial Radicals," ... Searle, a political historian, has broken new ground with the body of his work by exploring the modernization of British political life inthe nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Searle's book does a fine service by highlighting the political tensions that were always near the surface in mid-Victorian Britain ... For business historians, a book such as this one is a challenge to look beyond the firm, to explore the complex roleof business people in society ... Searle's book adds an important dimension to business history bu revealing some of the ways in whch industrial captalism had begun to alter the social and political landscape of Great Britain in the mid-19th century.'Peter Botticelli, Harvard Business School, Business History Review