Public Moralists: Political Thought and Intellectual Life in Britain, 1850-1930 (Clarendon Paperbacks)

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9780198204220: Public Moralists: Political Thought and Intellectual Life in Britain, 1850-1930 (Clarendon Paperbacks)

This imaginative and unusual book explores the moral sensibilities and cultural assumptions that were at the heart of political debate in Victorian and early twentieth-century Britain. It focuses on the role of intellectuals as public moralists and suggests ways in which their more formal political theory rested upon habits of response and evaluation that were deeply embedded in wider social attitudes and aesthetic judgments. Collini examines the characteristic idioms and strategies of argument employed in periodical and polemical writing, and reconstructs the sense of identity and of relation to an audience exhibited by social critics from John Stuart Mill and Matthew Arnold to J.M. Keynes and F.R. Leavis.

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About the Author:

Stefan Collini is the author of Arnold (OUP, 1988; pbk 1988) and has written widely on nineteenth-century intellectual history

Review:


"A provocative inquiry into the political thought of Victorian intellectuals....Students of the period will want to read it."--American Historical Review


"An engrossing reconstruction....With provocative insight and at times striking originality, Collini describes the emergence of a unique cultural nationalism rooted in language and literature."--Choice


"No one should come away untouched by Collini's rare ability to explain what one knew but had not bothered to understand....This is a book to be read once and again, and recommended--but not lent--to student and colleague alike."--Albion


"An especially stimulating and thought-provoking work and, since Collini writes with much grace and wit as well as critical insight, one of considerable literary as well as great historical merit."--Journal of Modern History


"Public Moralists is an excellent book which adds an insightful dimension to our knowledge of persons and ideas in Victorian England"--Victorian Studies


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