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date: 03 August 2021

p. 8613. The Masses and the Classes: The Urban Workerlocked

p. 8613. The Masses and the Classes: The Urban Workerlocked

  • Christopher Harvie
  •  and H. C. G. Matthew


‘The Masses and the Classes: The Urban Worker’ examines the condition of the working classes. The working classes enjoyed relative prosperity in the 1870s and 1880s, due to rising real wages and a falling birth-rate. Skilled workers joined trade unions to provide security and protect their interests. This working class self-awareness was cemented through leisure activities like association football. Cheap travel and seaside resorts opened up the possibility of holidays for the lower class. Hygiene and diet also improved. Church attendance amongst the working classes was poor, with the Anglican Church seeming especially distant and irrelevant.

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