The Country and the City


336 pages | Indexed

ISBN: 978 0 85124 7991




by Raymond Williams

A brilliant survey of English literature in terms of changing attitudes toward country and city, Raymond Williams’s perceptive study reveals the shifting images and associations between these two tradtional poles of life throughout the major developmental period of English culture. The author, who was a foremost social and cultural critic, finds the English experience especially significant because of the early occurrence of the Industrial Revolution, which so decisively transformed relations between the country and the city. This new edition makes available, once again, a seminal work.

‘A long, painstaking and beautiful examination of English literature in the search for shifting images of “country” and “city” through history and the often class-freighted and ahistorical meanings we give them. I challenge anyone to read his first chapter and not be eager to go on. As with Joyce and Irishness, so Williams with Welshness: two national cultural elements in my own background that have resonated within my own thought and work.’ Trevor Griffiths

‘ … Raymond Williams still speaks to us, at the start of the 21st century, as a roadman cutting and clearing the choked thoroughfares of our culture, a signalman indicating passable routes through the social, economic and political histories that shaped him – and us.’ Stan Smith, from his new Foreword

Patrick ParrinderEA Newsletter 200, Summer 2012
Houman BarekatWorking USA, March 2012
and Los Angeles Review of Books, August 2012.