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By John Lynch

The urban of Belfast has a tendency to be mentioned by way of its area of expertise from the remainder of eire, an business urban in an agricultural state. even if, compared to one other 'British' commercial port equivalent to Bristol it's the similarities instead of the variations which are staggering. whilst those towns are in comparison with Dublin, the contrasts turn into much more painfully obtrusive. This ebook seeks to discover those contrasting city centres first and foremost of the 20 th century.

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Extra info for A Tale of Three Cities: Comparative Studies in Working-Class Life

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It was apparent almost from the start that due to the extreme poverty of the Irish people, the conditions there were absolutely minimal for the success of the co-operative store; the situation was in fact almost the exact opposite of that which existed in England: to 40 The Labour Movement: a Wider View 41 be successful, the Consumers Movement demanded a well fed and self conscious aristocracy of labour, the product of a mature, industrial economy, whereas predominantly agricultural Ireland constituted what one might today call an 'underdeveloped country', its labour force consisting of a horde of religiously divided and economically indigent peasants.

7 * See note. 47 often enforce a closed shop system. Amongst the semi/unskilled workers it was the unions with a strong national organisation that tended to survive rather than the small local bodies. WOMEN AND TRADE UNIONS If skilled craftsmen were unsympathetic towards the unskilled, their attitude towards female labour was almost totally negative. In 1877 the Trades Union Congress recorded in the minutes that it was 'the duty of men and husbands to bring about a condition of things when their wives would be in their proper sphere instead of being dragged into competition of livelihood with the great and strong men of the world'.

FEMINISTS, PACIFISTS AND ABSTAINERS There is nothing uniquely 'labour' about the demand for female suffrage, opposition to war, or concerns about the social effects of drunkenness. These were all issues which in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were the subject of widespread debate. They can however be considered as part of the 'wider labour movement' simply because many trade unionists and socialists were deeply concerned about these issues and they influenced contemporary 'labour' thinking.

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