[Review] Russell Davies (2005) Hope and heartbreak: a social history of Wales and the Welsh, 1776–1871

Cragoe, Matthew (2007) [Review] Russell Davies (2005) Hope and heartbreak: a social history of Wales and the Welsh, 1776–1871. English Historical Review, 122 (495). pp. 198-200. ISSN 0013-8266

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Russell Davies begins his new social history of nineteenth-century Wales by criticising previous accounts for their overly narrow outlook. Both ‘nationalist’ and ‘socialist’ approaches, he suggests, have left untold the stories of countless Welsh men and women whose lives did not fit the chosen paradigm: ‘People who worshipped in church, or nowhere, those who did not speak Welsh, soldiers, industrialists, landowners with their ‘claret and Havana Tory voices’, indeed many who were prosperous and successful in the nineteenth century, were excluded from the Welsh nation and their histories forgotten (p. 4). In setting out to remedy this deficiency, Davies declares his determination to get at ‘the history of the emotions and passions of the Welsh’ (p. 21), and his willingness to use sources hitherto under-used by historians of Wales, such as ballads, ceramics, diaries, folksongs, furniture, gravestones, hymns, letters, paintings, photographs, poems and songs.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA History of Great Britain > DA700 Wales
Depositing User: Matthew Cragoe
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:36
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2012 09:33
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/26868
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