Austerity in Britain is the first book to explore the entire episode of rationing, austerity, and fair shares from 1939 until 1955. These policies were central to the British war effort and to post-war reconstruction. The book analyses the connections between government policy, consumption, gender, and party politics during and after the Second World War. The economic background to austerity, the policy's administration, and changes in consumption standards are examined. Rationing resulted in at times extensive black markets and popular attitudes to the policy ranged from wartime acquiescence to post-war discontent. Austerity in Britain qualifies the myth of common sacrifice on the home front and highlights the limitations of the fair-shares policy which failed to achieve genuine equality between the classes or between men and women. The continuation of rationing and austerity policies after 1945 was central to party politics. Disaffecton, particulary among women, undermined Labour's popularity while the Conservatives' critique of austerity was instrumental in the party's victories at the general elections of 1951 and 1955.
`Review from previous edition In view of its importance, the austerity regime has not attracted the academic study it deserves, and this scholarly and thoroughly researched book by Ina Zweiniger-Bargielowska will, therefore, be widely welcomed. She challenges received opinion in several ways and has much of interest to say for students of war, British administration, women and party-political history.'
Martin Pugh, TLS, 17 Nov 00 issue
`Readers of Austerity in Britain will particularly enjoy the detailed discussion on the black market.'
Martin Pugh, TLS, 17 Nov 2000 issue
`this is persuasive, and will have a large impact on discussion of post-1945 politics'
Philip Williamson, EHR
`an impressive and important book'
Philip Williamson, EHR
`I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in the British history of the mid-twentieth century.'
John Singleton, EH.NET, July 2000.
`the austerity regime has not attracted the academic study it deserves, and this scholarly and thoroughly researched book by Ina Zweiniger-Bargielowska will, therefore, be widely welcomed. She challenges received opinion in several ways and has much of interest to say for students of war, British administration, women, and party-political history ... Readers of Austerity in Britain will particularly enjoy the detailed discussion of the black market.'
Martin Pugh, Times Literature Supplement, November 2000
`At last we have a full history. Austerity in Britain is required reading for anyone who thinks that utility furniture and pencil-line stockings say it all.'
Richard Overy, The Sunday Telegraph
2: Popular Attitudes
4: The Black Market
5: Party Politics
Series: Rationing, Controls, and Consumption, 1939-1955
Number Of Pages: 300
Published: 1st June 2002
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.6
Weight (kg): 0.43