Particular Condition in Life: Self-Employment and Social Mobility in Mid-Victorian Brantford, Ontario

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McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP, Jun 21, 1994 - Business & Economics - 309 pages
Using extensive quantitative data, Burley provides a cultural analysis of the business community during the mid-nineteenth century. Because self-employment was so pervasive in Brantford, the impact of industrialization was particularly striking. Self-employed businessmen were forced to try to locate themselves in an emerging class system which often contradicted traditional Victorian social ideals of independence and manliness. Burley's exploration of the tensions behind these conflicting values - tensions both between myth and reality and within the bourgeois world view itself - is an important addition to the literature on business behaviour and Victorian cultural history. A Particular Condition in Life will be of interest to social, urban, and labour historians, sociologists, and those interested in the history of Ontario.
 

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Contents

Business Enterprise and Social Relations in a MidVictorian Town
19
Who Was SelfEmployed?
62
Credit and Debt
103
The Structure of Wealth
127
The Making of the SelfMade Man
170
Social Change and Urban Politics
198
Conclusion
234
Occupational Categories
241
Notes
245
Bibliography
277
Index
301
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Page 8 - And class happens when some men, as a result of common experiences (inherited or shared), feel and articulate the identity of their interests as between themselves, and as against other men whose interests are different from (and usually opposed to) theirs.
Page 8 - ... as it happened" (and of the present "as it happens") as distinct from the general and rather abstract models of the historical transformation of societies, class and the problem of class consciousness are inseparable. "Class" in the full sense only comes into existence at the historical moment when classes begin to acquire consciousness of themselves as such.
Page xii - Good for all he would ask: Credit and Debt in the Transition to Industrial Capitalism - the Case of Midnineteenth Century Brantford, Ontario», Histoire sociale/Social History, vol.

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