Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Light Blogging

Lots of work, so a few links.

I said the other day that "one of the things I'm interested in is documenting how it all went pear-shaped, what life was like before the Fall, the cultural drivers behind the destruction, the personalities involved, and some of the original documents."

The destruction has fallen most heavily on what was once the British working class.

"And the sandcastle virtues are all swept away,
In the tidal destruction, the moral melee"

as someone once wrote. I haven't time to investigate the fascinating subject of how the MIDDLE classes, before the fall the touchstone, exemplar and ambition of the respectable working man, became the object of the hatred and scorn of the 'representatives' of the working class, themselves middle-class almost to a woman. It would be interesting to research Hansard and socialist writing to discover when 'middle-class' became a term of abuse. I'd guess 1970/80s, with a few forerunners like Richard Crossman.

Let's just look at what the working class could do for themselves, before they had an enlightened State to do it for them.

Via commenter Phil Jackson, a look at The Classics In The Slums. And Frank Prochaska's series of posts at the SAU on the voluntary institutions of the working class. Enjoy.


Dave said...

Surely "In the tide of destruction, the moral malaise"

Blithering Bunny said...

I've just opened up the old Brick gatefold sleeve for a look, and it's "melee".

Blithering Bunny said...

Just noticed hw's other claim, that it's "tide of destruction", not "tidal destruction". I'm not currently at home and so can't look at the album, but I'm pretty sure I remember from playing the sheet music that it's "tidal destruction".

(Not that it really matters...)

Laban said...

it had some neat lyrics ...

"You put your bet on number one and it comes up every time,
The other kids have all backed down and they put you first in line,
So you finally ask yourself just how big you are,
And you take your place in a wider world of bigger motor cars"

Anyone would think he'd been observing ambitious young men in a large organisation. Human nature I guess.

Dave said...

I guess I'm "thick as a brick"!


Cyrus said...

'It would be interesting to research Hansard and socialist writing to discover when 'middle-class' became a term of abuse.'

Certainly by 1937 when George Orwell wrote 'The Road to Wigan Pier'. He argued that bearded, sandal-wearing lefties and Old Etonian communists were unnecessarily alienating more conventional middle-class folk. But as a Marxist he still saw the proletarianization of the middle class as a whole as the ultimate objective. So in theory he would have been delighted with current events in France. Whether he'd have been so impressed in practice is another matter - I suspect he'd have had more than a little sympathy with Dr Dalrymple's analysis.