thesis presented for the Degree of Ph.D. of the
University of Glasgow October 1983. This research was conducted in the
Department of Modern History, University of Glasgow, financed by a Scottish
Education Department Major Scottish Studentship.
Chapter 1 gives a brief
chronological outline of the emergence of a 'drink question', its origins
and phases, and notes the main temperance pressure groups established over
Chapter 2 describes the
fortunes of the Scottish Temperance League, Scottish Permissive Bill and
Temperance Association, and Independent Order of Good Templars in terms of
organisational structure and personnel, with reference to social class,
possible social mobility, class collaboration, philanthropy, and social
reform interests. The importance of Glasgow as a focus of temperance
pressure is stressed.
Chapter 3 describes moral
suasionist ideologies, their inspiration, and implimentation via strategies
involving traditional temperance propaganda techniques, plus novel
introduction of pressure on teachers, School Boards, and the Education
Department for 'temperance lessons', and its effects. The remarkable range
of rroral suasionist counter attractions are described and evaluated under
their various headings. The movement's creation of opportunities for social
mobility are highlighted.
Chapter 4 describes the
shared ideas (and/or assumptions) of the moral suasionist temperance
movement and thrift reformers. The spectrum of thrift institutions in which
temperance reformers were interested is discussed against the background of
urbanisation, housing and environmental reform. The importance of moves away
from static class categories featuring the rise of a new 'white collar'
commercial class is discussed, as is the temperance/thrift movement's
contribution to this process. The origins and progress, and organisation and
personnel of the acme of the moral suasionist/thrift movement, the
Independent Order of Rechabites, are described. Rechabites' idiosyncratic
attitudes to National Insurance are delineated and explained, against the
background of the temperance interest in health questions and the popularity
of Friendly Societies like the Foresters and Shepherds.
Chapter 5 describes
Prohibitionist ideology in terms of the social aspects of evangelicalism,
the Nonconformist Conscience, links with social reform and radical politics.
Prohibitionist tactics, utilising Anti Corn Law League and anti-slavery
devices, pressure on the Liberal Party reminiscent of the Liberation
Society, and organisation of an independent S.P.P. are studied.
Chapter 6 details briefly
local temperance pressure group politics through the medium of licensing
restriction, and against the backdrop of general trends in Victorian urban
reform and the 'civic gospel'.
Chapter 7 concerns the
licensed trade, or Trade, and its reaction to temperance pressure group
politics. The origins, structure, and success of Trade defence are discussed
with particular reference to the Glasgow area.
Chapter 8 attempts a very
brief social pathology, focussing upon the medical profession and the
clergy, women and children, and working men. Each of these sections of
society could be the subject of a Ph.D. Within the confines of this thesis
however it is only possible to describe the reception given to the 'drink
question1 by each of these groups, and the question's relevance for the
professional status of doctors, the social Christianity of the late 19th
century, the role of women and children in society, and the 'respectability'
of the Labour Movement.
Chapter 9 Concludes that the
Scottish temperance movement's apparent strength was a source of weakness.
Temperance societies proliferated, but the ideological differences between
the two main groups, the moral suasionists and the prohibitionists, were
never resolved. This was ironic given the similarities between their
memberships. Temperance's great attraction was that it reinforced desire for
social mobility, yet class assertiveness as well as class collaboration is
evident in societies like the I.O.G.T. and especially the Rechabites. The
pervasive influence of the •drink question' over the years 1870-1914 was the
work of the moral suasionists. Their work was a response to urban society,
and also to the needs of the new white-collar commercial class. This
accentuated the natural limitations of their work.
Reformers of this type were
at worst rather Philistine, but the discovered that it was remarkably
difficult to dictate popular taste - as did the Clarionites.
Prohibitionists, champions of the 'drink question' in pressure group
politics, also found that success had a bitter after-taste. They sought
classcollaboration but found that the 'drink question' not only polarised
politics for the Trade but was also a feature of the labour movement's shift
to the Left. This was predictable given many reformers' keen sense of
'social justice'. The success of Local Veto in 1913 was therefore a Pyrrhic
victory. Local Veto's effect on the Trade was limited, and pressure group
politics, Nonconformist Crusades, and even individual charity was rendered
passe by the Great War, 'class-politics', and the disintegration of the
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