cover of book

R. H. Tawney and His Times
by Ross Terrill
Harvard University Press, 1973
Paper: 978-0-674-74377-9 | Cloth: 978-0-674-74376-2
Library of Congress Classification HX243.T38T47
Dewey Decimal Classification 335.00924


Table of Contents:

Introduction: An Approach to Tawney
A Saint But Not a Thinker?
Reconstructing Tawney
The Significance of Style
Political Thought and British Politics

Part One: Tawney's Life

1. Moral Quest, 1880-1914
India, Rugby, Balliol: In a World He Never Made
Charity and Slums
He "Finds Himself" in Workers' Education
2. Socialist Politics, 1915-1931
War: "I Suppose It's Worth It"
Public Figure: Miners and Bishops
The London School of Economics, with Distractions
3. Squire of Houghton Street, 1932-1942
Political Troubles
Teacher, Colleague, Watchdog of Education
To America
4. Sage, 1943-1962
War a Springboard for Socialism?
Academia: Hood, Knife, Pen
"The Roots Are Loosened"

Part Two: Tawney's Socialism

5. Equality
Aspects of Equality
Equality and Equal Worth
Equality and Self-Fulfillment
Equality and Social Function
The Fruits of Equality
6. Dispersion of Power
The Threat of Authoritarianism
The Nature of Power
Power Must Be Dispersed
Purpose and Power
7. Social Function
The Basis of Rights
8. Citizenship
A Place in the House or a New House?
Departure from a Victorian Tradition
Education, Myth, and Citizenship
A Socialist Way of Life
Trusting the People
9. Fellowship
Recover Fraternity?
Up From Liberalism
Interlude of Possibility
The Key Is Fellowship
Within Reach of Each Other

Part Three: Tawney Today

10. Vulnerabilities
The Problem of Common Ends
Britain and the World
Marxism's Changed Position
Politics, Rationality, and Institutional Change
Reduced Role of Christianity
11. Tawney's Importance
The Case Against Capitalism
Combating Unbridled Capitalism and Authoritarianism
The Challenge of Collectivism
Christianity and Socialism
Humanistic Socialism
Tawney's Place in British Socialism

On Sources
Bibliography of the Published Writings of R.H. Tawney

Reviews of this book:
Should be the standard work for our generation.
--Review of Politics

Reviews of this book:
Mr. Terrill has written a magnificent book about a man who was larger than life in his influence on people and thought ... I shall not be surprised if it becomes a minor classic.
--Irish Times

Reviews of this book:
This biographical and analytical study of R.H. Tawney has three important merits. It is brief but dense (in the best sense). It is shrewd and reticent in its comments. And it is timely... it is good to be reminded that in Tawney's work we have a rich and permanent body of well-argued propositions, awaiting discovery by the younger generation, and rediscovery by their elders.
--New York Times Book Review

Reviews of this book:
Invaluable both for scholars and for undergraduates who may have a special interest in British socialism, or a general interest in 20th-century intellectual and social history.

Reviews of this book:
Terrill has written a fascinating study of Tawney. Opening with an elegant biographical sketch, he moves on to an evaluation of his thought and its importance in the socialist tradition. This section is a well-done and critical reminder that Tawney's humanistic socialism still has validity as a framework for social and political action.
--Library Journal

Reviews of this book:
A valuable study of Tawney's thought, enriched by a picture of the man, much of it based on interviews with those who knew him well.
--American Historical Review

Reviews of this book:
A fine biography of Tawney the man and public figure ... Provides a good window on British political culture, especially that particular variant, humanistic socialism.
--Foreign Affairs

I have read it, enthralled, at a single sitting.
--Professor Maurice Cranston

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