First published in 1982, this book is inspired the ideas generated by Eric Hobsbawm, and has taken shape around a unifying preoccupation with the symbolic order and its relationship to political and religious belief. It explores some of the oldest question in Marxist historiography, for example the relationship of ‘base’ and ‘superstructure’, art and social life, and also some of the newest and most problematic questions, such as the relationship of dreams and fantasy to political action, or of past and present — historical consciousness — to the making of ideology. The essays, which range widely over period and place, are intended to break new ground and take on difficult questions.
Acknowledgements; Preface Raphael Samuel and Gareth Stedman Jones; Theory; 1 Ideologies and mentalities Michel Vovelle 2 The ideal in the real Maurice Godelier 3 The historiography of everyday life: the personal and the political Alf Lüdtke; Culture; 4 Women and the faith in icons in early Christianity Judith Herrin 5 Plebian culture in the transition to capitalism 6 Pilgrims and progress in nineteenth-century England Deborah Valenze 7 Tennyson, King Arthur and imperialism Victor Kiernan 8 Hobsbawm and Jazz Tony Coe; Ideology; 9Fourteenth-century preachers’ views of the poor: class or status group? Maria A. Moisa 10 Science and magic in seventeenth-century England Christopher Hill 11 Determinism and environmentalism in socialist thought Logie Barrow 12 The diffusion of Marxism in Italy during the late nineteenth century Franco Andreucci 13 The peasant dream: Russia 1905-7 Teodor Shanin; Politics; 14 Druids and democrats: organic intellectuals and the first Welsh radicalism Gwyn A. Williams 15 State formation, nationalism and political culture in nineteenth-century Germany Geoff Eley 16 The roots of Czech Stalinism Jacques Rupnik 17 The Labour Party and social democracy Raphael Samuel and Gareth Stedman Jones; Bibliography; Bibliography of the writings of Eric Hobsbawm Keith McClelland; End-Piece; Eric Hobsbawm: a Cambridge profile 1939