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When the coal mines were nationalised in Britain in 1947, a number of smaller mines employing less that 50 men were still left in private hands. By 1961, most of the men in the fictional South Wales valleys' village of Cilhendre are employed in the large nationalised coal mine in the next valley but Ben Butch's private mine remains, paying more money to those that will put up with its backward working conditions, and with the whispers of their neighbours that they have somehow betrayed their community by their abandonment of the nationalised industry. Joe Jenkins is one of those who is tempted by the additional money: in the changing world of the 1960's he wants more than his parents ever had: a car and holidays abroad to go with his smart Italian shoes. But in a very short time of his taking the job he is dead, killed in an industrial accident which may be more complicated than it at first seems, and the effect of the death of this popular and well-liked young man on his family and friends, and on the community at large, is the focus of the novel. The sense of community was portrayed very well in this novel: by that I don't mean that it was sentimentalised in any way, but that both the good and bad points of the community life were put forward and examined. Many of the protagonists of the novel have a strong sense that the community is almost an entity in its own right which it is worth working to preserve, but Gallie does not shie away from examining the pressures, particularly on the women, of that same community's expectations and double-standards. And something that I particularly liked was the portrayal of the children, at first seemingly inserted for a little light relief, but soon becoming pivotal to the events recounted. [The Small Mine] is one of the Honno Classics series which, according to the blurb on the back, is 'an imprint which brings books in English by women writers from Wales, long since out of print, to a new generation of readers.' With its well-written picture of a vanished community, [The Small Mine] seems one that definitely justifies its republication in the twenty-first century. I'll certainly be looking out for more by Menna Gallie in particular and Honno in general.
Review: The Small Mine (Honno Classics)User Review - Nikki - Goodreads
It took me a while to get into the swing of The Small Mine -- not so much the story, but the descriptions, so many of them in triplicate, echoing other, not adding anything new. And sometimes the ... Read full review
Menna Gallie's Cilhendre : An Introduction to " The Small Mine "
The Small Mine is set is not made explicit in the novel, ... killed in the small mine, and the news of his death, as it passes from ear to ear in a chapel ...
www.honno.co.uk/ uploads/ small_mine_foreword.pdf
I Need More to Read!: ok ok here's the list
The Small Mine by Menna Gallie Cwmardy by Lewis Jones ... The Small Mine I also really liked, it's basically an industrial novel about the death of a miner. ...
desperate-reader.blogspot.com/ 2006/ 03/ ok-ok-heres-list.html
Ysgol y Dyniaethau a Gwyddorau Cymdeithasol
Menna Gallie, The Small Mine (1962; arg. newydd, Dinas Powys: Honno Press, 2000). T. Rowland Hughes, William Jones (1944; Llandysul: Gwasg Gomer, 1994) ...
welshpages.glam.ac.uk/ MODIWLAU%2002-03%20+%20GRADD/ BA%20Cymru1.htm