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The unknown Titmuss

Welshman, John (2004) The unknown Titmuss. Journal of Social Policy, 33 (2). pp. 225-247. ISSN 0047-2794

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    Abstract

    Recent writing in social policy on the role of agency has made important assumptions about social administration in the post-war period. In particular it is suggested that interpretations of the causes of poverty, and the thinking of Richard Titmuss, were characterised by a ‘denial’ of agency and almost total emphasis on structural factors. The implications were that this left the Titmuss paradigm vulnerable to more individualistic interpretations in the 1980s. In this article we look more closely at Titmuss's work and thought in the three decades of the 1940s, the 1950s, and the 1960s, aiming to produce a fuller and more nuanced analysis. We argue that the distinctive position adopted by Titmuss was in large part his response to earlier and on-going debates about social pathology. What he was trying to do was to make others aware of the broader context in which behaviour had to be analysed. But Titmuss himself became constrained by the paradigm that he did more than anyone else to create. Thus debates about behaviour, structure, and poverty have been marked as much by continuity as by change.

    Item Type: Article
    Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Social Policy
    Additional Information: http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=JSP The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Journal of Social Policy, 33 (2), pp 225-247 2004, © 2004 Cambridge University Press.
    Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
    Departments: Faculty of Health and Medicine > Health Research
    Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > History
    ID Code: 19952
    Deposited By: Dr John Welshman
    Deposited On: 20 Nov 2008 16:48
    Refereed?: Yes
    Published?: Published
    Last Modified: 03 Oct 2013 15:58
    Identification Number:
    URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/19952

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