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The rural warCaptain Swing and the politics of protest$
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Carl J. Griffin

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780719086267

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719086267.001.0001

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Something after Swing?1

Something after Swing?1

(p.295) 11 Something after Swing?1
The rural war

Carl J. Griffin

Manchester University Press

This chapter examines the resort to protest between the 1830 trials and December 1833, challenging the received understanding that Swing was crushed as too simplistic. It notes that the weapons of rural terror were frequently used to avenge prosecutors and that those who had reneged on wages agreements, wages protests and attacks on migrant labourers and threshing machines also continued into the summer of 1831. As well as maintaining its momentum in some places and later reviving in others, Swing also morphed into different forms, both real and phantasmagorical. The chapter analyses the response to repression and goes on to ask whether protests in the post-trial period represented an attempt to address ‘unfinished business’, and how the protest discourses of Swing were mobilised between 1831 and 1833 respectively.

Keywords:   1830 trials, rural terror, post-Swing, repression

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