A New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice
"Beautifully written, sparkling with insight, and a pleasure to read, Servants is social history at its most humane and perceptive." Paul Addison, Times Literary Supplement
From the immense staff running a lavish Edwardian estate to the lonely maid-of-all-work cooking in a cramped middle-class house, domestics were an essential yet unobtrusive part of the British hierarchy for much of the past century, required to tread softly and blend into the background. Lucy Lethbridge’s Servants gives them a voice in this discerning portrait of the complex relationship between the server, the served, and the world they lived in, opening a window on British society from the Edwardian period to the present.
|Publisher:||Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)|
About the Author
Lucy Lethbridge is the author of the highly praised Servants: A Downstairs History of Britain from the Nineteenth Century to Modern Times and Mind Your Manors: Tried-and-True British Household Cleaning Tips. She lives in London.
Table of Contents
Part I The Symbolic Pantomime
1 'A Sort of Silence and Embarrassment' 3
2 The Dainty Life 13
3 'A Seat in the Hall' 25
4 Centralising the Egg Yolks 34
5 Popinjays and Mob Caps 41
6 The Desire for Perfection 50
7 'Some Poor Girl's Got To Go Up and Down, Up and Down…' 59
Part II The Sacred Trust
8 The Ideal Village 83
9 'Silent, Obsequious and Omnipresent' 100
10 'Bowing and Scraping' 113
Part III The Age of Ambivalence
11 'Out of a Cage' 141
12 'Don't Think Your Life Will Be Any Different to Mine' 149
13 'It Was Exploitation But It Worked' 161
14 'Tall, Strong, Healthy and Keen to Work' 170
15 The Mechanical Maid 180
Part IV Outer Show and Inner Life
16 'A Vast Machine That Has Forgotten How to Stop Working' 193
17 'Bachelor Establishments Are Notoriously Comfortable' 208
18 The Question of the Inner Life 218
19 'Do They Really Drink Out of Their Saucers?' 229
20 'Of Alien Origin' 236
Part V A New Jerusalem
21 'A New and Useful Life' 251
22 The Housewife Militant 265
23 'The Change: It Must Have Been Terrible for Them' 276
24 The Shape of Things to Come 286
Part VI 'We Don't Want Them Days Again'
25 'We've Moved to the Front' 299
26 'I'd Never Done What I Liked… Never in All My Life' 310
27 'We Like It Because the Past Is Not So Worrying as the News' 316
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
For the Downton Abbey aficionado, this is a series of inside views of what it was like to be in service in England from 1880-1945. These people provided quality environments for a secure, but underpaid living. To wash the coins in the lord's pockets displayed the thoroughness of this attention.
Easily one of the best social histories I've read. The research is meticulous, the writing superb--just a joy to read!
If you like Downton Abbey this book gives more insight to life above and below stairs.
She walked in sighing tiredly, knowing she was going to be auctioned off. She shook her head tossing her long black hair that feel to her lower back. Her violet eyes looked around, uncomfortable since she only had br and underwear on, exposing her ivory skin. She sighed again, yanking on her erist shackles.
R u supposed to a se x slave? If so, go to auction res 1-6