(1880-1962) English economic historian and social critic and reformer. He had a great influence on the Labour Party, especially during the 1930s, although he never became an MP. His Labour and the Nation was the party’s manifesto for the 1931 general election.
After leaving Oxford University, he taught for the Workers’ Educational Association while working on The Agrarian Problem in the 16th Century 1912. He helped found the Economic History Society 1926 and became the joint editor of its journal, the Economic History Review.
As a committed Christian, Tawney based his socialism on moral values. His classic Religion and the Rise of Capitalism 1926 examined morals and economic practice in England 1588–1640, his special period. One of his most widely read books is The Acquisitive Society 1921 (later abridged as Labour and the Nation), in which he criticized capitalism because it encourages acquisitiveness and so corrupts everyone. In Equality 1931, he argued for urgent improvements in social services to deal with some of the glaring inequities of the class system.