The Significance Of The Issue Of Leasehold Reform For The Housing Of The Working Classes: 1880 To 1914

PhD Thesis

Pointing, John (1981). The Significance Of The Issue Of Leasehold Reform For The Housing Of The Working Classes: 1880 To 1914. PhD Thesis Council for National Academic Awards Department of Estate Management, Polytechnic of the South Bank
AuthorsPointing, John
TypePhD Thesis

This study consists of an examination of an historical problem —- the issue of leasehold reform — which is related to its socio-historical context of debate, during a period from 1880 to 1914. The prime objective of this study is to utilize the historical problem of leasehold reform in order to clarify the process whereby issues in the land and housing policy fields were formulated within this period, with particular consideration being given to the housing of the working classes. The relationship between this historical problem and its socio-historical context is treated as a source of data for producing a better understanding of that problem than would coeur Had leasehold reform been isolated as an issue and analyzed as a discrete object of enquiry. The study is divided into two parts. The first part, consisting of Chapters 1 and 2, is comprised of an examination of the theoretical and methodological issues pertaining to the housing policy field of the period from 1880 to 1914. The purpose of this discussion is to define the current state of theory development in the housing policy field, and to provide reasons for the method of approach das used in the study; which differs from that which is generally found in historical research of this field. It is concluded from this discussion that ‘intuitive theorizing' constitutes a valid method of interpreting historical data: a method which is not inferior to the more empiricist approaches employed in the social sciences, which specify the need for mm Ven we precise description of methods, largely for reasons of verification. The method of ‘intuitive theorizing' has been applied to the subject-matter of this research, because this is considered to offer a more fruitful way of interpreting the relevant data than empiricist methods. : Chapters 3 and 4 comprise the second part of this study. In these chapters, the relationships between leasehold reform and the relevant contemporary land and housing policy areas are analysed. Two major constructs have been used to analyse data. First, the concepts of ‘individualism' and ‘collectivism' have been used to elucidate the situation of leasehold reform in its socio—historical context of debate. These concepts have been considered as being interdependent and multifarious in form, as opposed to being considered as dichotomous, as is more usual in concept formulation in the social sciences. In contrast to orthodox historical definition of these concepts, individualism and collectivism are not considered in teleological terms -— as the products of different historical periods - but as contemporaneous concepts, which both pertain to the period in question. The second major construct, which constitutes the principal theoretical discovery of this research, is that of the ‘conservative consensus'. There are two elements to the 'conservative consensus ‘which have been developed on the basis of the data analysed in the study. In the first place, this concept describes a mechanism, which restricted governmental autonomy with regard to social policy formulation and implementation. As such, it refers to an underlying, ong sonst social process which helps to explain why no effective housing policy legislation was passed during the period from 1880 to 1914. In the second place, the ‘conservative consensus' is an explanatory concept, in that it has been used to explain the process whereby hegemony was induced amongst the owners of property, notably amongst house landlords and ground landlords. The empirical core of this study, the analysis of _ the proceedings and conclusions of the Select Committee on Town Holdings, is situated in the latter section of Chapter 4. The material selected for analysis is that pertaining to the concept of 'responsible' ownership : a concept that was of key importance for contemporary participants to debate in the housing policy context of the period in question. An Appendix is also provided to summaries some of the material of the Select Committee which is of ancillary importance to the concept of ‘responsible’ ownership. In the latter part of the Appendix, a model is provided to explain the relations between the various kinds of owners of leasehold interests. In the Conclusion to this study, the salient elements of land and housing policy which have been elucidated by the issue of leasehold reform are discussed. Additionally, the more general implications of this research for the analysis of social policy issues during the period from 1880 to 1914 are considered

PublisherLondon South Bank University
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
File Access Level
Publication dates
Publication process dates
Deposited20 Oct 2023
Permalink -

Download files

License: CC BY 4.0
File access level: Open

  • 19
    total views
  • 12
    total downloads
  • 1
    views this month
  • 0
    downloads this month

Export as