Chapter

Bruddersford and beyond

John Baxendale

in Priestley's England

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print July 2007 | ISBN: 9780719072864
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781700662 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7228/manchester/9780719072864.003.0003
Bruddersford and beyond

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This chapter focuses on the life of Priestly in Bradford and after Bradford. Bradford was the paradigm of nineteenth-century industrial England. This was the England of slag-heaps and mill chimneys and doss-houses, back-to-back slums and cindery waste-grounds, and ‘grim, fortress-like cities’. Bradford was one of the most socialist and dissenting cities of England. From this culture, Priestly took two profound ideological influences: socialism and dissent. For Priestly socialism and dissent became part and parcel of a rich, democratic and self-sufficient cultural life, which is recreated in his novels. Priestly projected his vision of Bradford on to the nation. The ideal England he evoked in wartime was not some proletarian paradise but ‘all one lot of folk’ writ large.

Keywords: Bruddersford; Priestley; industrial town; lower middle classes; mill

Chapter.  19794 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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