In the middle of the nineteenth century, England’s Chartist movement—its energies strikingly similar to those of the Occupy movement, its intent similarly misunderstood by the powerful—established reading rooms throughout Britain. This was an era when public libraries were not widespread; most lending libraries charged subscription fees.

The free Chartist libraries were enormously popular—and for the elite, enormously unsettling. A commentator in Blackwood’s magazine argued that “Whenever the lower order of any state have obtained a smattering of knowledge they have generally used it to produce national ruin.”

Utilitarian reformers sought public funding for libraries where, they argued the intellectual appetites of working class-readers could safely be turned to productive ends.

– excerpted from Tactical Utopia by Matthew Battles

Occupy Kennington Common: London’s Great Chartist Meeting, 1848

More information on Chartism…known possibly as the first working class labor movement…

[h/t to Andrew Sullivan at The Daily Beast…]

Normal
0

false
false
false

EN-US
X-NONE
X-NONE

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-parent:””;
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:11.0pt;
font-family:”Calibri”,”sans-serif”;
mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;
mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-bidi-font-family:”Times New Roman”;
mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;}

Price:              250 @$ 311.00

   500 @ $329.00

                   1,000 @ $360.00

Advertisements