This is a second-hand copy of the book Littledene - A New Zealand Rural Community (1938) by H.C.D. Somerset.
Condition: This is a used book in good condition. Dustjacket has fading to spine - see photos. The dust jacket has now been covered in a non-adhesive PVC cover for its own protection. This is simply folded in place and is easy to remove without damaging the jacket.
Publisher: New Zealand Council for Educational Research Year: 1938 Format: Hardback with dustjacket Pages: 102 Condition: Used (Good)
Crawford Somerset's Littledene: a New Zealand rural community (1938) was a groundbreaking sociological study of a typical New Zealand small-town - Oxford in North Canterbury. According to commentator Brian Easton, the book 'combines the wry insights of a sociologist and the lyric observations of a poet'.
Hugh Crawford Dixon Somerset and his wife, Gwendolen, were outstanding figures in New Zealand adult education. In 1920-1 Crawford (as he was known) and Gwen Alley, then both students at Christchurch Training College, attended the first Workers' Educational Association (WEA) summer school at Oxford, which included lectures on drama by James Shelley and economics by J.B. Condliffe. Gwen came from an intellectual and literary family: one brother, Rewi, achieved fame for his educational work in China, while another, Geoffrey, became New Zealand's first national librarian.
In 1924, at Condliffe's urging, Crawford established a WEA tutorial class for adults in Oxford, where Gwen was then teaching; the couple were married in 1930. After spending 1936-7 in Britain and the United States on a joint Carnegie fellowship, the Somersets undertook a pioneering sociological study of Oxford. Littledene was published in 1938 by the New Zealand Council for Educational Research. Although it was the couple's joint work, Crawford was credited as its sole author.
Littledene provides a fascinating insight into the geography, economy and social life of small-town New Zealand. At least until the mid-1920s, the branch railway was Oxford's ‘chief line of communication' with the outside world. The farmer's regular ‘trip to town' also offered opportunities for social interaction.
In 1938 the Somersets became co-directors of New Zealand's first community centre, established in Feilding. Crawford contributed to the Making New Zealand series (1940) and wrote other works, including Child nutrition in a rural community (1941) and a school bulletin, The dairy farm (1947). In 1947 he was appointed senior lecturer in education at Victoria University College. During the 1950s he undertook further visits to Oxford, which resulted in ‘Littledene revisited', published along with the original book as Littledene: patterns of change (1974). Gwen, meanwhile, became a leading figure in the Playcentre movement.
We charge a set shipping rate per order of $5 for regular domestic shipping and $10 per order ($5 extra) for rural delivery.
Orders over $100 have free shipping inside New Zealand.
Pick up from our store is available during business hours.