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8 September 1994
Townscape with Figures: Farnham, Portrait of an English Town 
by Richard Hoggart.
Chatto, 205 pp., £16.99, June 1994, 0 7011 6138 8
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... Walking along the main street of Farnham one afternoon, Richard Hoggart was accosted by a drunk. He didn’t ask for money or spit ill-focused abuse. ‘I know who you are,’ he slurred, ‘and I’ve got one question for you. Who’s the better writer, you or Raymond Williams?’ Reading this, I found I was disappointed that the level of literary criticism among Farnham’s drunks was so low ...

Whose Candyfloss?

Christopher Hilliard: Richard Hoggart

16 April 2014
Richard HoggartVirtue and Reward 
by Fred Inglis.
Polity, 259 pp., £25, October 2013, 978 0 7456 5171 2
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... Richard Hoggart​ made much in his writings of the scholarship child’s uprootedness and anxiety, but his own dislocation had its limits. Although he went from a primary school in a poor part of Leeds to grammar school and on to university, Hoggart never really made what the novelist Storm Jameson, a generation ahead of him at the University of Leeds, called the ‘journey from the North ...

Kinsfolk

D.A.N. Jones

12 July 1990
A Sort of Clowning: Life and Times, 1940-59 
by Richard Hoggart.
Chatto, 225 pp., £14.95, June 1990, 0 7011 3607 3
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Tilting at Don Quixote 
by Nicholas Wollaston.
Deutsch, 314 pp., £14.95, June 1990, 0 233 98551 4
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Finger Lickin’ Good: A Kentucky Childhood 
by Paul Levy.
Chatto, 202 pp., £13.95, May 1990, 0 7011 3521 2
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How Many Miles to Babylon? 
by Adewale Maja-Pearce.
Heinemann, 154 pp., £13.95, June 1990, 0 434 44172 4
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... of escape’ – escape from society. Finally (and to be taken foremost) is A Sort of Clowning by Richard Hoggart, perhaps the most usefully class-conscious English writer of our time. He created an accepted general idea of the British ‘working class’ in 1957, with The Uses of Literacy. He developed his concept, most recently, in his memoir, A Local ...

Examples

Denis Donoghue

2 February 1984
Towards 2000 
by Raymond Williams.
Chatto, 273 pp., £9.95, October 1983, 9780701126858
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Writing in Society 
by Raymond Williams.
Verso, 268 pp., £18.50, December 1983, 0 86091 072 5
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Radical Earnestness: English Social Theory 1880-1980 
by Fred Inglis.
Martin Robertson, 253 pp., £15, November 1982, 0 85520 328 5
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... R.G. Collingwood, F.R. Leavis, George Orwell, Adrian Stokes, Tony Crosland – as he calls him – Richard Titmuss, Richard Hoggart, Raymond Williams, John Berger, E.P. Thompson and Isaiah Berlin. If you need a stereotype of the English socialist, you may as well take this one as any other, though it’s hard to do any ...
20 December 1979
Class 
by Jilly Cooper.
Eyre Methuen, 283 pp., £4.95
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... class is amusing, Jilly Cooper has not let her subject down. She quotes the Registrar General and Richard Hoggart and Michael Young, while writing in a manner that falls somewhere between Nancy Mitford and a Daily Mail column. Her characters are fun, her observations acute, and since she does not try her hand at analysis, it is hard to fault her. Yet the ...

Watercress

Patrick Parrinder

20 August 1992
Past Tenses: Essays on Writing, Autobiography and History 
by Carolyn Steedman.
Rivers Oram, 224 pp., £22, June 1992, 1 85489 021 2
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... to challenge the sentimental and moralistic pictures of working-class community associated with Richard Hoggart, Jeremy Seabrook and Steedman’s particular mentor, Raymond Williams. The childhood Steedman described was not cosy and hospitable but lonely, introverted and largely joyless. Her mother, a Lancashire weaver’s daughter, had fought against ...
2 June 1988
Gorbals Boy at Oxford 
by Ralph Glasser.
Chatto, 184 pp., £11.95, May 1988, 0 7011 3185 3
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... different from that of one’s childhood: the familiar story was successfully told by Richard Hoggart thirty years ago, and it was a recurring topic of Raymond Williams’s. But their tales of privation, upward mobility and cultural contrast were very mild compared with Glasser’s. The poverty from which he emerged was far more disastrous ...

We’ve done awfully well

Karl Miller: The Late 1950s

18 July 2013
Modernity Britain: Opening the Box, 1957-59 
by David Kynaston.
Bloomsbury, 432 pp., £25, June 2013, 978 0 7475 8893 1
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... the respect for working-class values which he associates with the work of Williams, Young and Richard Hoggart, and before that of D.H. Lawrence, and which would appear here to have followed on a spell of postwar indifference. The working class is thought by these writers to be marked by a power of sympathy, of closeness and attachment, which makes ...

Wall in the Head

Carolyn Steedman: On Respectability

27 July 2016
Respectable: The Experience of Class 
by Lynsey Hanley.
Allen Lane, 240 pp., £16.99, April 2016, 978 1 84614 206 2
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... for this one. On both Hanley is accompanied by some very nice men. I’d love to meet her mate Richard, first introduced in Estates. At Solihull College they were ‘the much-talked-about, little practised coming together of north Solihull and south Solihull, a clash of the provincial titans to match Adrian Mole and Pandora’, without the romance. In and ...
6 October 1983
A Variety of Lives: A Biography of Sir Hugh Greene 
by Michael Tracey.
Bodley Head, 344 pp., £15, September 1983, 0 370 30026 2
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... Sir Arthur fforde, whereas it or ginated in the Pilkington Committee’s report and was drafted by Richard Hoggart, then a member of the committee. The phrase ‘the political establishment’ is used several times. It seems to me portentous and vague. I suspect that if it had to be defined, it would fall out of use. The whole political establishment is ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: What I did in 2014

8 January 2015
... Cambridge. On parade (on King’s Parade in fact) just after ten, where the calming presence of Richard Lloyd Morgan, the chaplain of King’s, waits to shepherd me to the Senior Common Room. It’s already crowded with dons, some, since it’s the university sermon, presumably heads of houses.* I manage to avoid a chat by settling into a corner to con my ...

Home Stretch

John Sutherland: David Storey

17 September 1998
A Serious Man 
by David Storey.
Cape, 359 pp., £16.99, June 1998, 9780224051583
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Saville 
by David Storey.
Vintage, 555 pp., £6.99, June 1998, 0 09 927408 6
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... readers of my (and his) generation will recall the final shot of This Sporting Life: Frank Machin (Richard Harris), mired, spavined, raising himself on the rugby field to lurch back into hopeless battle. His life as a professional is over. Football chews up its workforce faster even than the pits. But Arthur doesn’t take it lying down: no longer a sportsman ...

Gosh oh gee

Alan Allport: ‘Being Boys’

21 November 2013
Being Boys: Youth, Leisure and Identity in the Interwar Years 
by Melanie Tebbutt.
Manchester, 352 pp., £75, February 2012, 978 0 7190 6613 9
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... only by way of nostalgic contrast to the ‘materialist’ 1950s. In The Uses of Literacy (1957), Richard Hoggart inveighed against the shallow Americanised world of the 1950s teenager, comparing London’s ‘harshly lighted milk bars’ to the communitarianism of prewar Leeds as he remembered it from his childhood. ...

Expendabilia

Hal Foster: Reyner Banham

9 May 2002
Reyner Banham: Historian of the Immediate Future 
by Nigel Whiteley.
MIT, 494 pp., £27.50, January 2002, 0 262 23216 2
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... the Independent Group, the extraordinary band of young artists, architects and critics (including Richard Hamilton, Peter and Alison Smithson, and Lawrence Alloway, among others) who developed, from within the Modernist Institute of Contemporary Art, a Pop sensibility of their own. His revised dissertation, Theory and Design in the First Machine Age, made his ...

‘Shop!’

Hilary Mantel

4 April 1996
Behind the Scenes at the Museum 
by Kate Atkinson.
Black Swan, 382 pp., £6.99, January 1996, 0 552 99618 1
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... descended on Atkinson. A man from the Daily Express asked her to explain what Post-Modernism was; Richard Hoggart, chairman of the Whitbread judges, said that Atkinson had written a Post-Modern novel, but might not know it. (She did the whole thing absent-mindedly, perhaps, while polishing brass doorknobs.) The Daily Mail sent a woman who found the ...

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