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"Now and Then": contemporary issues in early modern context

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David Hitchcock - A ‘Rogue’s Eye View’: The cultural force of homelessness

14:19, Tue 1 May 2012

David Hitchcock David Hitchcock, a final year PhD student in the History Department at Warwick University, talks about the strange diffusion of modern narratives of homelessness, and the odd disconnect between modern notions of social justice, and the (lack of) agency of modern homeless people. He compares this narrative to the ‘great and terrible cultural force’ of rogues and vagabonds in the period 1650-1750, in which contemporaries were pre-occupied with reforming and ‘improving’ the poor in order to prevent a slide into vagrancy and crime, but they also figured the vagabond as a cultural figure of unique power and significance.

(MP3 format, 23:13, 10 MB

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