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The Introduction and Operation of the New Poor Law in Suffolk 1834-70

Miller, Angela (2020) The Introduction and Operation of the New Poor Law in Suffolk 1834-70. PhD thesis, University of Essex.

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Abstract

This thesis examines the introduction of the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834 into Suffolk between the years 1834-71. It looks at the poor law system as it was immediately prior to this time and the increasing difficulties it faced in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It also examines contemporary ideas on population growth, such as those popularised by Malthus, as well as those of Utilitarians and Noetics, all coalescing to bring about the change of 1834. It compares the situation in Suffolk with that in the rest of the country, looking specifically at the Houses of Industry and their adaptability to the new system and the particular impetus given by Dr. James Kay as Assistant Poor Law Commissioner in the county of Suffolk to achieving their conversion to Union workhouses. It examines the power structures surrounding the New Poor Law, particularly the relationship between the local Boards of Guardians and the central Poor Law Commission (and later Board.) It also looks at the power structures within the workhouse. In the early days of the workhouse, relations proved particularly volatile, as few real structures of policy had been included in either the Poor Law Commission’s report or the eventual act. The work goes on to examine how such issues as discipline, medical treatment and education therefore actually worked out in practice.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > History, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2020 16:38
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2020 16:38
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/27951

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