Chartism, the British mass movement for democratic and social rights in the 1830s and 1840s, was profoundly shaped by the radical tradition from which it emerged. Yet, little attention has been paid to how Chartists saw themselves in relation to this diverse radical tradition or to the ways in which they invented their own tradition. Paine, Cobbett and other ‘founding fathers’, dead and alive, were used and in some cases abused by Chartists in their own attempts to invent a radical tradition. By drawing on new and exciting work in the fields of visual and material culture; cultures of heroism, memory and commemoration; critical heritage studies; and the history of political thought, this book explores the complex cultural work that radical heroes were made to perform.

part 1|1 pages

Chartism and the radical tradition

chapter 1|28 pages

Inventing the radical tradition

chapter 2|26 pages

Unfurling the radical tradition

The visual and material culture of Chartism

chapter 4|21 pages

Using and abusing the radical tradition

part 2|1 pages

The cult of the radical hero/villain

chapter 5|25 pages

The Chartists and Mister Thomas Paine

chapter 6|25 pages

Forging the radical tradition

Chartism, currency and Cobbett

chapter 7|23 pages

Richard Oastler and the Chartists