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Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940The Politics of Method$
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Mike Savage

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199587650

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587650.001.0001

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1954: The Challenge of Technical Identity

1954: The Challenge of Technical Identity

(p.67) 3 1954: The Challenge of Technical Identity
Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940

Mike Savage

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the emergence of the so-called technical identity in Great Britain in 1954. It argues that the changing relations between the middle and working classes encouraged amongst the former both a rejection of the gentlemanly embrace, which was seen to be out of keeping with the meritocratic tenor of post-war Britain, and a new interest in rational planning, which was to prove receptive to the social sciences. The chapter contends that the social sciences were shaped by a managerial concern, strongly indebted to cultures of war, mobilization, and demobilization, and suggests that the social sciences did not merely respond to a changing external environment but are themselves implicated in new forms of governmentality, regulation, and social imaginary.

Keywords:   technical identity, Great Britain, middle class, working class, social sciences, managerial concern, social imaginary

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