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Mike Huggins

2 Horseracing, the media and British leisure culture, 1918–39 edia experience was part of everyday activity. It helped make sense of the world and construct cultural citizenship.1 Reading the racing pages in the sporting, national and regional press or the adverts, novels and non-fiction with a racing theme, provided a temporary escape from Britain’s economic problems. Watching breathtaking racing action shots in newsreel and film was enhanced by ever-improving photographic equipment. As electricity and radio became more available, the BBC radio commentaries on

in Horseracing and the British 1919–39
Author: Mike Huggins

This book provides a detailed consideration of the history of racing in British culture and society, and explores the cultural world of racing during the interwar years. The book shows how racing gave pleasure even to the supposedly respectable middle classes and gave some working-class groups hope and consolation during economically difficult times. Regular attendance and increased spending on betting were found across class and generation, and women too were keen participants. Enjoyed by the royal family and controlled by the Jockey Club and National Hunt Committee, racing's visible emphasis on rank and status helped defend hierarchy and gentlemanly amateurism, and provided support for more conservative British attitudes. The mass media provided a cumulative cultural validation of racing, helping define national and regional identity, and encouraging the affluent consumption of sporting experience and a frank enjoyment of betting. The broader cultural approach of the first half of the book is followed by an exploration if the internal culture of racing itself.

Open Access (free)
Teaching ‘relaxed living’ in post-war Britain
Ayesha Nathoo

chapter analyses the processes by which neuromuscular relaxation functioned and proliferated as a taught practice. It is a study of health communication, education and management, which pays attention to material and audio-visual cultures and uncovers the mechanisms, expectations and consequences of teaching and learning relaxation. Whereas state-sponsored public health campaigns relating to smoking, alcohol, diet and exercise have been well documented by historians, the processes by which stress-management strategies were contemporaneously popularised and consumed have

in Balancing the self
Open Access (free)
The Algerian war and the ‘emancipation’ of Muslim women, 1954–62
Author: Neil Macmaster

In May 1958, and four years into the Algerian War of Independence, a revolt again appropriated the revolutionary and republican symbolism of the French Revolution by seizing power through a Committee of Public Safety. This book explores why a repressive colonial system that had for over a century maintained the material and intellectual backwardness of Algerian women now turned to an extensive programme of 'emancipation'. After a brief background sketch of the situation of Algerian women during the post-war decade, it discusses the various factors contributed to the emergence of the first significant women's organisations in the main urban centres. It was only after the outbreak of the rebellion in 1954 and the arrival of many hundreds of wives of army officers that the model of female interventionism became dramatically activated. The French military intervention in Algeria during 1954-1962 derived its force from the Orientalist current in European colonialism and also seemed to foreshadow the revival of global Islamophobia after 1979 and the eventual moves to 'liberate' Muslim societies by US-led neo-imperialism in Afghanistan and Iraq. For the women of Bordj Okhriss, as throughout Algeria, the French army represented a dangerous and powerful force associated with mass destruction, brutality and rape. The central contradiction facing the mobile socio-medical teams teams was how to gain the trust of Algerian women and to bring them social progress and emancipation when they themselves were part of an army that had destroyed their villages and driven them into refugee camps.

By expanding the geographical scope of the history of violence and war, this volume challenges both Western and state-centric narratives of the decline of violence and its relationship to modernity. It highlights instead similarities across early modernity in terms of representations, legitimations, applications of, and motivations for violence. It seeks to integrate methodologies of the study of violence into the history of war, thereby extending the historical significance of both fields of research. Thirteen case studies outline the myriad ways in which large-scale violence was understood and used by states and non-state actors throughout the early modern period across Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Atlantic, and Europe, demonstrating that it was far more complex than would be suggested by simple narratives of conquest and resistance. Moreover, key features of imperial violence apply equally to large-scale violence within societies. As the authors argue, violence was a continuum, ranging from small-scale, local actions to full-blown war. The latter was privileged legally and increasingly associated with states during early modernity, but its legitimacy was frequently contested and many of its violent forms, such as raiding and destruction of buildings and crops, could be found in activities not officially classed as war.

Open Access (free)
Postfeminist genealogies in millennial culture
Stéphanie Genz

movement and its origins are more impure, emerging in and from a wide conceptual and contextual web (academia, media and consumer/brand culture; neoliberal politics) that has been influenced by feminist concerns and women’s enfranchisement. Moreover, postfeminism is also located outside of feminist historical periodization and epochal thinking – commonly epitomized by the ‘wave’ metaphor. This chronology or ‘oceanography of feminist movement’ 16 comprises the surge of feminist activism in the nineteenth and early

in Post-everything
Open Access (free)
Mike Huggins

the key place of racing and betting on races in British culture. Racing possessed its own subculture, explored later in the book, but racing impacted even on those who never went to a race meeting and never placed a bet. Given its media coverage, no one could ignore it. Racing was the leading cultural manifestation of sport. Chapter 2 explores the sometimes ambiguous, often complex and always interdependent relationships between racing and the mass media. It examines the ways in which racing was presented, packaged and imagined, from the racing pages in the sporting

in Horseracing and the British 1919–39
Open Access (free)
Mike Huggins

Conclusion he vast majority of ordinary people in Britain between the wars paid far more attention to sport, and the doings of ‘society’, than to the interests of the country’s intellectual elite. Racing was one of Britain’s leading national sports, and the media gave it more prominence than football or cricket, its main competitors. Involvement in or opposition to it were integral factors in British cultural life. Previous pages have explored its place in detail, and discussed social and economic changes in racing between the wars, power and control in racing

in Horseracing and the British 1919–39
Open Access (free)
Adam Fox and Daniel Woolf

decry the results. McLuhan made the press, along with later electronic media, especially television (he did not live into the age of the Internet), the twin foci of an elliptical critique of modern culture. His work, written in a deliberately idiosyncratic and often impenetrable ‘mosaic’ style that has irritated many of his readers, has nevertheless exercised a continued influence on modern communications research. McLuhan’s own reputation has ebbed and flowed since the 1960s, and he is alternatively revered as a prophet of the Information Age, and even of

in The spoken word
Charles V. Reed

demonstrated how imperial culture was made by complex modes of reception and appropriation, how ideas about empire, citizenship, and identity were forged in encounters and experiences ‘on the ground’, as it were, and how colonial knowledge was always imperfect and partial. The Delhi durbar was the greatest act in the performance of imperial culture by British royals. The royal jeweller crafted a lighter

in Royal tourists, colonial subjects and the making of a British world, 1860–1911