We are open! For operations and delivery updates due to COVID-19. (click here)

Call Boomerang Books 1300 36 33 32

Description - A Fiery & Furious People by James Sharpe


'Wonderfully entertaining, comprehensive and astute.' The Times

'Sweeping and ambitious ... Sharpe is a humane and clear-eyed guide to a series of intractable and timely questions.' Observer

'A magisterial book ... The outlaw's song has surely never been better rendered.' Times Literary Supplement
From the tragic tale of Mary Clifford, whose death at the hands of her employer scandalised Georgian London, to an account of the violent activities of Victorian Manchester's scuttling gangs, via a character portrait of the duel-obsessed Cavalier Sir John Reresby, A Fiery & Furious People explores the brutal underside of our national life in all its variety. And as it considers the litany of assaults, murders and riots that pepper our history, it also traces the subtle shifts that have taken place both in the nature of violence and in people's attitudes to it. Why was it, for example, that wife-beating could at once be simultaneously legal and so frowned upon that persistent offenders might well end up being ducked in the village pond? When did the serial killer first make an appearance in the annals of English crime? How could football be regarded at one moment as a raucous pastime that should be banned, and the next as a respectable sport that should be encouraged? What gave rise to particular types of violent criminal - medieval outlaws, Georgian highwaymen, Victorian garroters - and what made them dwindle and then vanish?

Throughout, Professor James Sharpe draws on an astonishingly wide range of material - court records and murder pamphlets, popular ballads and novels, sermons and films - to paint vivid pictures of the nation's criminals and criminal system from medieval times to the present day. He gives a strong sense of what it was like to be caught up in, say, a street brawl in medieval Oxford or a battle during the English Civil War. And he also seeks to answer perhaps the most fascinating and fundamental question of all- is a country that has experienced not only constant aggression on an individual scale but also the Peasants' Revolt, the Gordon Riots, the Poll Tax protests and the urban unrest of summer 2011 naturally prone to violence or are we, in fact, gradually becoming a gentler nation?
'Deeply researched, thoughtfully considered and vividly written ... Read it.' History Today

'Sharpe's eye for detail ensures that the shock value never dwindles.' Mail on Sunday ****

'Deeply thoughtful and thought-provoking ... genuinely hard to put down.' BBC History Magazine

Buy A Fiery & Furious People by James Sharpe from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.

Book Details

ISBN: 9781847945136
ISBN-10: 1847945139
Format: Hardback
(240mm x 162mm x 65mm)
Pages: 768
Imprint: Random House Books
Publisher: Cornerstone
Publish Date: 8-Sep-2016
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions - A Fiery & Furious People by James Sharpe

Book Reviews - A Fiery & Furious People by James Sharpe

» Have you read this book? We'd like to know what you think about it - write a review about Fiery & Furious People book by James Sharpe and you'll earn 50c in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars (you must be a Boomerang Books Account Holder - it's free to sign up and there are great benefits!)

Author Biography - James Sharpe

James Sharpe was Professor of History at the University of York from 1997 until his retirement in 2016. He is a leading social historian, with a particular interest in the history of crime. He has published widely on the subject and is a committee member of the International Association for the History of Crime and Criminal Justice. His books include Instruments of Darkness- Witchcraft in England 1550-1750 (1996) and Dick Turpin- the Myth of the English Highwayman (2004).

A Preview for this title is currently not available.