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Popular recreation Social analysis and mainstream values • An analysis of the class system and structure prior to the Industrial Revolution is needed. • Britain was effectively a two class society consisting of those who HAD (The Gentry) and those who HAD NOT (The Peasantry) • Britain was also broadly Rural in nature, with the Rural calendar forming the basis of the Recreational calendar with Church Wakes, and Village Feasts, Fairs and Festivals being an essential ingredient of pre-industrial life.
Social analysis and mainstream values • Life was both hard and cheap • Public Hangings were amongst the most popular Social Gatherings • So, while the agricultural workers had neither wealth nor particularly Good Health, at least they had both Space and Time-A feature that was soon to change • From the 1750’s, there began a move to the towns and the influence of the technical revolution began to be felt.
Sports such as the maypole, the harvest festivals, the church wakes and various other opportunities for a “bit of sport” did not transport well to the grime of the cities. People now had to work long hours to keep a roof over their heads.
Social analysis and mainstream values • The impact of such overwhelming change in economic and industrial terms clearly had social impact.With both Time and Space now severely curtailed, life changed dramatically for the working family. • A new Urban Middle Class emerged (Industrialists, Entrepreneurs, Professionals, Managers ) and their values and attitudes were different from those of the pre industrial Peasant or Gentry Farmer
Popular recreation - key words • Occasional • Wakes • Prize Fight • Dogget, Coat & Badge • Localised • Mob Games • Holy Day • Haxey Hood • Games Laws • Courtly
POPULAR RECREATION ESSENTIALS • P re • L ocalised • U ncoded • C ruel • I ndustrial • C ourtly/Popular • R ural • O ccasional • W ager