First published in 1969, this book presents a one-volume anthology of Charles Booth’s Life and Labour of the People in London, the classic early study of the poor in the urban environment. The original text consists of a vast compendium of descriptions of families, homes, streets, conditions of work, cultural and religious practices, much of it illustrated with charts, maps and statistics — giving the public an idea of the dimensions and meaning of poverty. The editors have selected the extracts in this book for their vividness, readability and intrinsic interest, and their introduction conveys the context of 1880s London — relating Booth’s investigations to contemporary concerns.
Foreword by Raymond Williams; Prefatory Note; Introduction; Chapter 1 Poverty; The School Board Visitors The Setting The Eight Classes Some Examples of Class A Poverty by Districts Standards of Living Household Economics London Street by Street; Chapter 2 Occupations; Sweating Confectionary Bread-baking Prostitution; Chapter 3 The Jews of London; The Jewish Community; Chapter 4 Religion and Culture; Religion Habits of the People Institutions; Chapter 5 Illustrations: Random Observations from Booth’s Notebooks; Chapter 6 Recommendations; Economic Conditions of Life Various Methods of Inquiry Eliminating Poverty Industrial Remedies The Organization of Charity Housing Expansion Conclusion; Bibliography
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