Download A Cultural History of the British Census: Envisioning the by Kathrin Levitan (auth.) PDF


By Kathrin Levitan (auth.)

ISBN-10: 1349298247

ISBN-13: 9781349298242

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Additional info for A Cultural History of the British Census: Envisioning the Multitude in the Nineteenth Century

Sample text

98 Yet this conflict between Rickman and the statisticians of the 1830s is also indicative of a larger political division. Significantly, the founding of the RG and the 1841 census marked a general political transition in the control of the census. Both Charles Abbot, the original sponsor of the 1801 census, and John Rickman, who controlled the first four enumerations, were Tories. 99 Rickman was an anti-Malthusian and a close friend of the conservative romantic writer Robert Southey, with whom he collaborated on numerous Quarterly Review articles during the first decades of the nineteenth century.

The Office also issued special publications at times, such as a report on the cholera epidemic of 1848–1849. The census was seen as closely tied to the other duties of the RG. As a Treasury report of 1855 noted, “The objects of the Census, and the machinery by which they are obtained, are so analogous to the ordinary operations of the registration system . . ”77 The 1841 census and those following were conducted by this office, and the men who worked there had a great deal of control over the directions in which the census developed.

The early census was a product of an age that was essentially local and family- oriented. The newly complex and diversified economy could not be described until the statistical movement had triggered the greatly expanded census of the mid- century period. The Rise of the Statistical Movement As early as the 1820s, suggestions were heard for a dramatic extension of the census. ”41 Henderson called for a faster method, better- constructed schedules, a more accurate description of occupations, and more information in general.

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