Lucy Moore

Honour among Thieves

Playboys & Mayfair Men: Crime, Class, Masculinity, and Fascism in 1930s London

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Johns Hopkins University Press 272pp £18.50 order from our bookshop

As a family, we while away long car journeys with the Young Bond series. However, despite many happy hours listening to the dashing Etonian face up to baby Blofelds, I had never thought to place our hero in a social and historical context. Not until reading Angus McLaren’s gripping account of a violent robbery in December 1937 did I properly appreciate that the decade in which Bond supposedly came of age was a period in which ideas about masculinity as well as class were profoundly disrupted and that peacetime as well as war can be a stimulus for redefining notions of manhood.

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