Engineering workers and the rise of Labour in Coventry 1914-1939
Carr, Francis W. (1978) Engineering workers and the rise of Labour in Coventry 1914-1939. PhD thesis, University of Warwick.
WRAP_THESIS_Carr_1978.pdf - Submitted Version - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Official URL: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/record=b1750981~S1
This thesis is concerned with Coventry in the period 1914 to 1939.
It is a study of the developments in the city's labour movement in this
period. It concentrates on the fortunes of engineering trade unions, the
Labour Party, the Co-operative movement, and the Communist Party. The aim
of the thesis is to explain the way the labour movement changed in these
years, and to draw attention to the shifts in working class consciousbess
that took place.
Although most of the thesis covers the period 1914 - 1939 there is an
introductory survey that covers the development of large scale engineering
in Coventry, and the growth of the engineering unions and the Labour Party
before the First World War. The thesis then follows the progress of the
unions during the war, and. explains the effect of the main war-time strikes.
The years after the war, up to 1922, are dealt with in detail, as these were
years of political and industrial upheaval. The lockout of the engineering
unions in 1922 is also dealt with in detail, and the thesis looks at the effect
of the lockout on the AEU in particular.
Then the position of the unions in the period of set-backs and defeats
after 1922 is covered, as is their eventual recovery in the 1930's. A study
is made of the way the recovery took place, and the differences between the
resurgent trade unionism and the earlier unionism of the war and the early
1920's are shown. The thesis also looks at the effect of the General Strike
on Coventry. Throughout the thesis, an attempt is made to explain the changing
relationship between the Labour Party and the trade unions, and account for
the gradual emergence of the Labour Party as the majority party in the city.
The victory of the Labour Party in the local elections is considered, and an
assessment of Labou& period of rule between 1937 and 1939 is given. The
role of the Communist Party in organising the unemployed in the post-war
years, and its involvement in the unions, and particularly the recovery of
the unions, is studied.
The thesis also covers the political life of Coventry in this period;
and therefore deals with the Conservative and Liberal Parties and the
coalition they formed against the Labour Party. It attempts to explain
the many different ways in which these parties exercised social and political
leadership in Coventry. The work of the City Council in the fields of
housing and education is studied, and emphesis given to the differences
in policy between the Labour Party and the other political parties, and the
impact of Council policies on working class people.
The role of the Engineering Employers' Association is studied, and
the changes in its relations with the unions throughout this period. Attenion
is also given to its relations with the local political parties, and its
influence on Coventry in general. The internal discussion that took place
within the Coventry Co-operative Society in the 1920's is assessed, as is
its strengthening links with the Labour Party.
The thesis examines the way the development of mass production in the
engineering industry changed jobs and changed the role of the unions in the
factories. The response of trade union shop stewards to changix conditions
is examined, both in the period of unrest during and after the First World
War, and in the second part of the 1930's. Technological change in the period
is only dealt with in its effects on employment, though a broad outline of
economic change is given.
|Item Type:||Thesis or Dissertation (PhD)|
|Subjects:||D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Labor movement -- England -- Coventry -- History -- 20th century, Working class -- England -- Coventry -- History -- 20th century, Industrial engineering -- England -- Coventry -- History -- 20th century, Engineers -- Labor unions -- England -- Coventry -- History -- 20th century, Coventry (England) -- Politics and government -- 20th century|
|Official Date:||September 1978|
|Institution:||University of Warwick|
|Theses Department:||Department of Social History|
Actions (login required)
Downloads per month over past year