Knocking-off Time in the North: Images of the Working Class and History in L.S. Lowry and Mitchell and Kenyon

  • Paul DaveEmail author


This chapter considers the meanings of northernness in the Mitchell and Kenyon ‘factory gate’ films and the work of L.S. Lowry, with particular attention paid to the 2013 Tate Britain Lowry exhibition curated by T.J. Clark and Anne M. Wagner. Dave argues that northernness represents a complex set of interrelated ideas about the working class and history. While the Mitchell and Kenyon factory gate films allow us to revive a utopian and now unfamiliar sense of working-class northernness as historically open to the future, Lowry’s work has been iconic in establishing a post-war northernness which is associated with a sense of failure, defeat and dysfunctionality. By bringing these two very opposed visions of the North into collision, the chapter seeks to disrupt the functioning of contemporary neoliberal ideologies of class.


Playing Space Factory Gate Crowd Effect Absolute Equality Social Instinct 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Arts and MediaUniversity of TeessideMiddlesbroughUK

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