The Ray Pahl Collection

Scope and Content

The study covers the period 1961 to the present and represents all of his research interests with a particular reference to employment, communities and urban/rural life.

Administrative / Biographical History

In the 1960s Ray Pahl undertook pioneering research into the changing nature of rural society, and the phenomenon of the new commuter villages in the Hertfordshire 'rural-urban fringe'. This early interest in middle-class life led to his collaborative research work, with Professor Jan Pahl, into Managers and their Wives: a study of career and family relationships in the middle class (1971). On his appointment as Professor of Sociology at the University of Kent his research attentions shifted both socially and geographically, as he began to explore the predominantly working class life of the Isle of Sheppey. This resulted in several major studies which focused on Sheppey from 1978 to the mid 1980s. Some of these Sheppey studies stand alone, others are follow-ups; but much of the material deposited with the National Social Policy and Social Change Archive also formed the basis for Pahl's investigation of the changing patterns of work in all its forms, published in 1984 as Divisions of Labour.

Access Information

By written application to either the Librarian or Deputy Librarian. A letter of introduction may be required and prospective users will be obliged to sign an undertaking outlining the terms and conditions of access to the research materials.


Entry compiled by John Southall of Qualidata, UK Data Archive, University of Essex using entries from the NSPSCA information pack and Qualidata's online catalogue.

Record entered by Nadeem Ahmad of Qualidata, UK Data Archive, University of Essex.

Other Finding Aids

A collection level record for all materials in the Ray Pahl data collection is available via Qualidata's online catalogue, Qualicat.

Conditions Governing Use

No part of the NSPSCA collections may be reproduced, published, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form, or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the Albert Sloman Library. This may be obtained by application to the Librarian or Deputy Librarian.

Sub fonds for each collection stipulate further access conditions.


The materials held in the collection contain personal and identifying information. It is essential that the privacy of all respondents is not infringed. No real names or any other identifiable information used in the studies may appear in public. No attempt may be made to contact respondents directly. Use of the materials to derive information relating specifically to an identified individual or to claim to have done so is prohibited.

Appraisal Information

In consultation with academic colleagues, the library special collections acquisitions staff evaluate collections by assessing their relevance to the teaching and research interests of the University.

Custodial History

The collection was held by Ray Pahl as part of his personal papers until 1997. Then it was prepared for archiving by Qualidata and deposited in the NSPSCA. A life story interview with Pahl was conducted as part of the archiving project.


Additional material continues to be added.


Pahl, R.E. 'Education and social class in commuter villages', ('Sociological Review', Vol.XI, No. 2, 1963) Pahl, R.E. 'The Two Class Village', ('New Society', 27/2/1964) Pahl, R.E. (1965) 'Urbs in Rure, the Metropolitan Fringe in Hertfordshire', (London) Pahl, R.E. 'Class and community in English commuter villages', ('Journal of the European Society for Rural Sociology', Vol. 5 no. 1, 1965 pp 5 - 23) Pahl, R.E.(1968) 'Newcomers in Town and Country', in Munby, L.M. (ed) 'East Anglian Studies' (Cambridge: Heffer) J.M. Pahl and R.E. Pahl, 'Managers and their wives : A study of career and family relationships in the middle class' Allen Lane, 1971 Wallace, C.D., with Pahl, R.E., and Dennett, J.H. 'Housing and Residential Areas on the Isle of Sheppey', (HWS Project Report, University of Kent. SSRC, 1981) Pahl, R.E., and Wilson, P. 'Industry and Employment on the Isle of Sheppey', (HWS Project Report, University of Kent, SSRC, 1981) Pahl, R.E. and Wallace, C.D. 'Household work strategies in an economic recession', in Redclift, N.,and Mingione, E. (eds.)(1984) 'Beyond employment, household, gender and subsistence', (Oxford: Blackwell) Pahl, R.E., Divisions of Labour (Oxford, Blackwell, 1984) Pahl, R.E., 'Deindustrialisation and social polarisation' (Work and Society Newsletter No 4, April 1984) Pahl, R.E. and Wilson, P., ' A Statistical Portrait of the Isle of Sheppey, 1981' (Canterbury, U.K.C., 1984) Pahl, R.E., 'The Restructuring of Capital, the Local Political Economy and Household Work Strategies, all Forms of Work in Context', in Urry, J., and Gregory, D. (eds), Social Relations and Spatial Structures (London, Macmillan, 1984) Pahl, R.E., 'The Social and Political Implications of Household Work Strategies' (The Quarterly Journal of Social Affairs, Vol. 1 (1), 1985, pp. 9-18) Pahl, R.E. and Wallace, C.D., 'Forms of Work and Privatisation on the Isle of Sheppey', in Roberts, B., et al (eds) New Approaches to Economic Life (Manchester University Press, 1985) Pahl, R.E. and Wallace, C.D., 'Polarisation, Unemployment and All Forms of Work', in Allen, S., et al (eds) The Experience of Unemployment (London, Macmillan, 1986) Pahl, R.E., and Wilson, P., 'Industry and Training on the Isle of Sheppey', (HWS Project Report, University of Kent, Rowntree Foundation, 1986) Pahl, R.E., with Missiakoulis, S., and Taylor-Gooby, P., 'Households, Work and Politics: Some Implications of the Divisions of Labour in Formal and Informal Production' (International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, Vol. 6 (3), 1986) Pahl, R.E., 'Does Jobless Mean Workless? Unemployment and Informal Work', (Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, September 1987, pp.36 - 46) Pahl, R.E., and Wallace, C.D., 'Neither Angels in Marble nor Rebels in Red: Privatisation and Working Class Consciousness' in Rose, D., (ed) Social Stratification and Economic Decline (London, Hutchinson, 1988)

Additional Information

National Social Policy and Social Change Archive (NSPSCA), Albert Sloman Library, University of Essex.