In Care of the State

In Care of the State : Health Care, Education and Welfare in Europe and America

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This work is a comparative analysis of the development of health care, education and social welfare from small-scale, mostly informal voluntary arrangements toward collective institutions of national scope and controlled by the state. De Swaan examines the growth of poor relief, elementary education, urban sanitation and social security over several centuries in Britain, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the USA, and shows how local authorities and later national governments became involved in resolving dilemmas of collective action which emerged whenever the established strata in society sought to protect themselves against the threats that the poor represented for them. The rise of capitalism, urbanization and the formation of national states brought people together in increasingly extensive and intensive networks of dependency.
To illuminate his research, the author combines two strands of thought which until now have remained separate: first, the theory of collective action provides a framework for the analysis of interdependent interests and joint activities; second, the tradition of historical sociology and especially the work of Norbert Elias allow him to develop a dynamic theory and order the multitude of facts from a developmental perspective. De Swaan concludes with a view of current problems of poor relief education and social welfare on a global scale. His argument will provide an indispensable background against which these contemporary issues can be discussed.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 310 pages
  • 150 x 226 x 28mm | 521.63g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 0745608450
  • 9780745608457

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 Local Charity, Regional Vagrancy and National Assistance Chapter 3 The Elementary Curriculum as a Code for National Communication Chapter 4 Medical Police, Public Works and Urban Health Chapter 5 Worker's Mutualism: An Interlude on Self-Management Chapter 6 Social Security as the Accumulation of Transfer Capital Chapter 7 Conclusion: The Collectivizing Process and Its Consequences Index.
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12 ratings
3.41 out of 5 stars
5 25% (3)
4 25% (3)
3 25% (3)
2 17% (2)
1 8% (1)
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