Medicine And Books

The Gift Relationship: From Human Blood to Social Policy; Man and Wife: Richard and Kay Titmuss—My Parents' Early Years

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7118.1319 (Published 15 November 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:1319
  1. Roy Porter
  1. professor of social history of medicine, Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, London

    The Gift Relationship: From Human Blood to Social Policy

    Richard M Titmuss Original edition with new chapters, eds Ann Oakley, John Ashton LSE Books, £14.99, pp 345 ISBN 0 7530 12014

    Man and Wife: Richard and Kay Titmuss—My Parents' Early Years

    Ann Oakley Flamingo, £7.99, pp 288 ISBN 0 00 655013 4

    With the eclipse of the politics of state socialism, Richard Titmuss has ceased to be a household name. But, for the postwar generation, he was one of the intellectual pillars of the welfare state, combining mastery of the statistics of poverty, inequality, and ill health with an impassioned philosophy of social justice. The Gift Relationship (1970), his last major work and now available once more in a welcome updated reprint, is vintage Titmuss: the model of the British National Blood Transfusion Service is commended not merely because giving rather than selling blood fosters social altruism but because (as his abundant figures show)it also makes for an …

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