1940: The Resurgence of Gentlemanly Expertise in Post-war Britain

Mike Savage

in Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940

Published in print May 2010 | ISBN: 9780199587650
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191740626 | DOI:
1940: The Resurgence of Gentlemanly Expertise in Post-war Britain

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This chapter introduces the idea of the ‘gentlemanly social sciences’ that dominated Great Britain not only in the first part of the twentieth century, but well into the 1950s. It shows that there was no easy progression from these gentlemanly social sciences to the ‘new’ social sciences of the 1960s, and describes the dramatic changes which took place between 1955 and 1965 in the conduct of sociological research. The chapter discusses how gentlemanly social sciences prospered in post-war conditions, leading to a reviving synthetic sociology based at the London School of Economics (LSE), and explains how the expansion of the LSE brought tensions between sociology as a specialist discipline and as an overarching evolutionary synthesis to a head.

Keywords: social sciences; Great Britain; sociological research; post-war conditions; LSE; sociology

Chapter.  9467 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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