[Ebook] ➦ Round About a Pound a Week By Maud Pember Reeves – Airdomains.co.uk

Round About a Pound a Week This Is A Study Of Working Class Life In Lambeth, London, In The Early Years Of The 20th Century That Is Witty, Readable, Poignant And Fascinating.In 1909 A Group Of Women, All Of Them Members Of The Feminist, Left Wing Fabian Women S Group, Would Regularly Leave Their Comfortable Homes In Kensington And Hampstead And Call On Forty Two Families In Lambeth In Order To Interview Them About Their Everyday Life They Wrote Down Their Findings And In 1912 These Were Written Up As A Twenty Page Fabian Tract Which Maud Pember Reeves 1865 1953 And Her Co Author Charlotte Wilson Decided To Turn Into The Snappily Titled Round About A Pound A Week The Sixteen Chapters, Covering Such Topics As Housing, Thrift, Food And Mothers Days, Resulted In A Book Of Stunning Interest And Originality Which Has Never Really Been Rivalled In The Nearly 100 Years Since First Publication In 1913.

10 thoughts on “Round About a Pound a Week

  1. says:

    I ve read this book many times in my life, starting from when I was quite small, because it was written by my Great Great Grandmother, Maud Pember Reeves Every time I ve read it I ve been full of pride for her clear headed research into the living conditions of the respectable working poor in Edwardian Lambeth, but since I ve been an adult each re reading has been accompanied by despair that the points she made so cogently still need to be made today People are all too eager to believe the worst of the poor, to believe that their dire living conditions are their own fault, and all they need to do to succeed is to try harder This study showed exactly how the game was rigged against the London working class, for example how economies of scale allowed a middle class family to pay 1 8 of their income for their very nice house while the working class had to pay 1 3 of their income for one or two squalid, unhealthy rooms The poor also had to pay proportionately for fuel food and the additional expense of burial insurance left the families with barely enough money to provide protein for the breadwinner and bread for the rest Why burial insurance The death rate was appallingly high, over 40% in families with 10 or children, and the only alternative was the shame of a paupers grave With burial insurance at least the living family members wouldn t be pauperized The participants in this study were not the poorest of the poor, these were the relatively well off working class famili...

  2. says:

    What a fascinating book The Fabian Society, a socialist group, did a study of poor but not destitute mothers in London in 1909 11 The idea was to give nursing mothers an allowance of milk for themselves only, for 3 months before and 9 months after they gave birth and to study what difference this made to the health of the new baby compared with their other children they all had several The mothers who were selected had husbands in steady work who gave their wives a housekeeping allowance of around 1 a week The rationale was that women who had money might be adequately nourished already, and women who had less would be too tempted to give their milk to the rest of the family In the process of the study, Maud Pember Reeves and other Fabian ladies visited regularly and noted the women s housing situation They asked the women to keep accounts to show how their housekeeping money was spent and also to record the family s menu for a week At the end of the study the Fabians first published a pamphlet calling for government support for poor working families, and this book grew out of that.The budgets and menus are just riveting The money might be difficult for non British people and younger Brits because I don t think it is anywhere explained that 12 pennies made a shilling and 20 shillings made a pound I can just abou...

  3. says:

    A classic book in many ways, primarily as emblematic of turn of the century Fabian feminism, and at the same time one of the first serious studies of working class women.It is heartbreaking.I read a large chunk of it in a most horrific yet insanely trendy and expensive hotel we had been put up in last minute as a result of an error in arrangements for a panel The Mondrian God People there dripped money and it heaved with staff anxious to help them and extremely expensive art in terribly bad taste and the prow of beaten copper pieces individually soldered had taken two and a half years to create and I sat there in the lobby waiting for my partner without the wherewithal to buy a drink reading about life in cellars and dead babies with tears literally dripping from my nose and the desire to smash all of it Because we re heading back there Back to 1913 this reads like Dickens but these conditions shamefully lasted well into the 20th Century Where they should have been abolished forever.So many babies died The rest slowly starved, along with their parents This book contains tables and tables of menus, hard choices, the relationships between housing and illness and death I love Virago Press, bless them for republishing it with Sally Alexan...

  4. says:

    This book, published in 1913, is truly outstanding, and by the original definition of the word outstanding Which means that such a thing book or not stands out among others of its kind And in this book Maud Pember Reeves did something that truly stood out Over the prior century many, many books and articles had been published in Britain about the household economies of the poor, at first tut tutting over the perceived inability of the poor to responsibly manage their cash outlays and then only bit by bit admitting that the poor were really fellow human beings with claims on middle and upper class empathy Maud Pember Reeves comes at the end of a long line of busybody, middle and upper class authors of censorious tractates thrown at the heads of the poor like grenades But Reeves does it right Reeves has obviously read and learned And for Reeves the poor are members of the same species to which she belongs, worthy of the same serious, understated attention and concern as real nieces or nephews In the history of British minds and attitudes, this was a truly vast improvement.Yet this book deserves than praise It set off in...

  5. says:

    Book describes the lives of working class families living on you guessed it from the title a pound a week between 1909 and 1913.This book hits back at people who say the poor should manage their money back and feed their kids better The classic example is porridge there was a big campaign by well meaning middle classes to try and get people to eat porridge What they failed to note was that although oats were affordable to the families in this book, milk and the gas to heat the porridge was not Jamie Oliver take note.The families in the study are not destitute but are the working class The book is written by a Fabian woman and many of the issues she brings up, like a living wage, are still relevant today So is...

  6. says:

    This simple little book should be compulsory reading for anyone feeling sorry for themselves because they are short of money Less than 100 years ago respectable people with a reasonable steady job living in Lambeth area would have to be able to keep a family maybe with 6 8 children on round about a pound a week But the most shocking part of it was that over 5% of each week s money had to go on Burial Insurance because if even the tiniest child had to be buried in a paupers grave the breadwinner had to be declared bankrupt and would be unlikely to ever find work again The group of Fabian women who did this research described their visits to Lambeth as a plunge into Hades but their fin...

  7. says:

    Written in 1913 as the result of what we would now call an intensive round of social work and observation among working class families in Lambeth, London, Round About a Pound a Week offers a shocking insight in the daily lives of the not even very poor in early twentieth century England We are shown the remarkable ingenuity of women in stretching the 20 weekly shillings coming in, the nonsensical advice of well meaning middle class visitors advising the women to buy fresh milk, not realizing that a four pence a quart, fresh milk is an unaffordable luxury and the ever present spectre of child mortality with well over on...

  8. says:

    Brilliant, contemporary social history A Fabian Society project to chronicle the lives of working class families surviving, barely, on wages of one pound a week These were not the poorest of families, having a breadwinner with a respectable and reliable job Yet these were below subsistence wages T...

  9. says:

    Everyone should read this telling document of social history At the beginning of the last century vast swathes of the population worked in towns and cities earning around about a pound a week The author details in blunt terms how it is impossible to raise a healthy family on this amount And she is not shy with her criticism of all the do gooders who think they could better and who brand these families as feckless spendthrifts The birth o...

  10. says:

    Fascinating social history, with little judgement of its subjects Descriptive rather than prescriptive, with a lot of individual detail As it is quite old, all figures were given in.s.d which I do not understand but this only slightly affected my enjoyment of the book.

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