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An Open Elite: England 1540-1880
An Open Elite? sets out to test the traditional view that for centuries English landed society has been open to new families made rich by business or public office. From a detailed examination of the landed elites of three counties between 1540 and 1880, the authors come to radical new conclusions about the landed classes. They describe the strategies of marriage and inher ...more
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This book seeks to uncover the truth behind a long-held belief: that the English landed elite were stable and powerful for so long because of an ‘open elite’ policy, allowing self-made men of the merchant classes to ascend into their ranks. The authors take the reader through a dizzying amount of graphs, tables, and analysis to test that theory. But when you step back you cannot help but admire the precision to which they have created this research plan, with air tight conclusions about England’ ...more
A focused study of the landed elite in England during its rise; while usefull as a historical investigation, this book is so scaled and limited by its academic analysis as to lack any broad appluication. I find the one enduring message to be that the appearance of the possibility of upward mobility is a useful way to keep the masses happy, even if such mobility is not truly available to all.
Lawrence Stone was an English historian of early modern Britain. He is noted for his work on the English Civil War and marriage. Stone was a major advocate of using the methods of the social sciences to study history.More about Lawrence Stone...