The Politics of Social Solidarity: Class Bases of the European Welfare State, 1875-1975

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By analyzing the competing concerns of different social actors behind the evolution of social policy, this study explains why some nations had an easy time in developing a welfare state while others fought long entrenched battles.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is an important contribution to the study of comparative social welfare and to current debate among historians and political and social scientists." Business History Review

"This is a very important book, one that is certain to become a cornerstone in the welfare state literature." Gösta Esping-Andersen, American Journal of Sociology

"...definitely one of the most invigorating and sharp analyses that has been produced over the last 10 years on the theory of the evolution of the modern welfare state." Journal of Public Policy

"This book is a 'must read' for all scholars in the field of social policy and will be of interest to many other political sociologists. It could be used in graduate courses in political sociology and social policy; in courses on comparative and historical methods, it would make an instructive contrast with the work of social scientists on the welfare state." Ann Shola Orloff, Contemporary Sociology

"Baldwin offers a meticulous analysis of the development of old-age pension policies in Sweden, Denmark, England, France, and Germany over an entire century. His mastery of the literature—including archival sources and parliamentary debates—for five different countries is extraordinary." Fred Block, Dissent

"This dazzling book demonstrates how contagious diseases affected politics and public policy in Europe." Foreign Affairs

"The 100-year period covered by Peter Baldwin in this book was perhaps the most exciting in the recorded history of humankind's interaction with the infectious pathogens with which we share our global ecosystem....Baldwin discusses...fascinating social and cultural factors in great detail in this richly referenced scholarly monograph. Baldwin's fellow historians, and political scientist, will find this book stimulating and provocative. Professinal medical historians will also welcome it." John M. Last, Comptes Rendus

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521375122
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/13/1990
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments; Abbreviations; Introduction; 1. The origins of the solidaristic welfare state: Scandinavia; 2. The triumph of the solidaristic welfare state: Britain and Scandinavia; 3. The failure of the solidaristic welfare state: France and Germany; 4. From Beveridge back to Bismarck: the superannuation issue; 5. Solidarity by the back door; Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.

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