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Title: Thousands say, we won't pay! : Merseyside tenants in struggle, 1968-1973
Author: Singleton, Kim
ISNI:       0000 0004 0123 5629
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2010
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The aim of this thesis is to examine the political history of the tenants movement on Merseyside during an active period, in order to understand the complex multiple characteristics of working class struggles centred on local housing issues. Through the included data, much of it formerly outside the domain of public records, a picture emerges of a multiplicity of possibilities and tensions, growing primarily from the twin bases of housing struggles in grassroots labour activism and distinctive local conditions. While comparable studies of rent strikes have identified different types of tenants action groups, permanent and single issue, and contrasting political values, specifically community against class orientations, the contention drawn from the data here is that community values may enhance a class perspective as readily as they may inhibit and that furthermore the germ of radicalisation or inhibition may be found in grassroots community and labour lead actions equally. In order to understand a form of struggle that is neglected academically, compared to industrial labour histories, the methodology of this research admitted to critical examination the non-mainstream radical and community sources that are themselves a part of the identity of housing struggles as well as data taken from face to face interviews with tenant activists. The historical details gathered explain the relative militancy of Merseyside's tenants during the period in terms of both their local traditions of housing protest and community activism and their local conditions. SpeCifically it suggests a relationship of the class militant areas that resisted the national 'Fair Rents' scheme to the housing pollcles locally that had triggered a number of strikes during the earlier period. It suggests also that the grassroots origin of many organised actions was a problematiC factor throughout the period. SpeCificallythis was because protests that sought connection to related struggles had only the labour movement as their vehicle introducing into a spontaneous form of protest conventional organisational values. At the same time, autonomous action necessitated connection to radical non-conformists, often outsiders to the local dynamic. In drawing out the details of these struggles, this research provides a picture through which the difficulties of organising political resistance from a condition that is socially and politically marginal may be understood.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available