E. P. Thompson and English radicalism

Edited by Roger Fieldhouse and Richard Taylor

E. P. Thompson and English radicalism


  • Hardcover
  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-9748-5
  • Pages: 272
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £20.99
  • Published Date: June 2015
  • BIC Category: 20th century, c 1900 to c 1999, History, General & world history, Social & cultural history, POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies / Communism, Post-Communism & Socialism, Modern History, Sociology, HISTORY / Modern / 20th Century, Society & social sciences / Socialism & left-of-centre democratic ideologies, Humanities / Social & cultural history


Available in paperback for the first time, E. P. Thompson and English radicalism gathers together a selection of leading authors from a diverse range of disciplines to critically review not only this pivotal work, but the wide range of his career, including his experience as an adult educator, writer, poet and critic. His involvement in the early New Left, his political theories, his socialist humanism and his concept of class are all interrogated fully. Thompson was also a notable and passionate political polemicist, peace campaigner and activist who saw all his public activity as complementary parts of a unified whole, and this collection aims to bring his ideas to the attention of a new generation of students, scholars and activists.


'Intellectually exploratory and written with admirable clarity, E.P.Thompson and English radicalism achieves the almost impossible: it does justice to a great historical thinker and practitioner who also wrote poetry, loved liberty, hated humbug and resisted the inner and the outer hold of capital over human existence and experience. It illuminates a valiant, many-sided, quizzical friend of the people for readers who know his work and for those yet to discover his writing.'
Sheila Rowbotham, author of 'Dreamers of a New Day: Women Who Invented the Twentieth Century' (2010)

'This eloquent set of essays manages to address, both sympathetically and critically, the many and varied aspects of Thompson's life, as a historian, a teacher, a poet, a political activist, a Marxist and libertarian, and an Englishman and a cosmopolitan. Thompson's legacy is hugely relevant for the troubled times in which we now live.'
Mary Kaldor, The London School of Economics and Political Science|"A major book on Edward Thompson, who died 20 years ago, is an important reminder of the loss of English radicalism and the need to revive it"
(Michael Barratt Brown, The Spokesman, 124, 2014), Michael Barratt Brown, The Spokesman, 2014|...this collection of essays explores in some detail the diverse range of activities and interests of this'passionate and romantic polymath., Martin Crick, The Journal of William Morris Studies, Vol. XXI, No. 1, Winter 2014, 86-90, 27 December 2014


1. E.P. Thompson: a short introduction - Roger Fieldhouse, Theodore Koditschek and Richard Taylor
Part One: Adult education, history and literature
2. Thompson: the adult educator - Roger Fieldhouse
3. The making of The Making - David Goodway
4. The possibilities of theory: Thompson's Marxist history - Theodore Koditschek
5. The uses of literature: Thompson as writer, reader and critic - Luke Spencer
Part Two: Policy, theory and peace campaigns
6. Thompson and socialist humanism - Kate Soper
7. Thompson's concept of class: the flesh and blood of self-emancipation - Nina Power
8. Thompson and the early new left - Michael Newman
9. Thompson and the Peace Movement: from CND in the 1950s and 1960s to END in the 1980s - Richard Taylor
Part Three: E.P.Thompson: an overview
10. Paradox and the Thompson 'School of Awkwardness - Bryan D Palmer
Appendix: Thompson's writing style
Select bibliography
Other sources


Roger Fieldhouse is Emeritus Professor at the University of Exeter

Richard Taylor is Emeritus Professorial Fellow at Wolfson College, University of Cambridge

E. P. Thompson and English radicalism

Edited by Roger Fieldhouse, Richard Taylor

Paperback £20.99 / $30.95

Hardcover £90.00 / $140.00

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