Thomas H. Marshall

Thomas H. Marshall books and biography

Thomas Humphrey Marshall

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Thomas Humphrey Marshall (1893-1981) is a British sociologist, most noted for his essays, such as the essay collection Citizenship and Social Class.


T.H. Marshall wrote a seminal essay on citizenship, entitled "Citizenship and Social Class". This was published in 1950, based on a lecture given the previous year. He analysed the development of citizenship as a development of civil, then political, then social rights. These were broadly assigned to the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries respectively. His distinctive contribution was to introduce the concept of social rights. He claimed that a citizen is only a full citizen if they possess all three kinds of right, and that this possession of full rights is linked to social class.

Marshall's analysis of citizenship has been criticised on the basis that it only applies to males in England. (Note: England rather than Britain.) However, there is debate about whether he intended his historical analysis to be interpreted as a general theory of citizenship or whether he was just commenting on the development in England.


  • Marshall, T. H. (1950). Citizenship and social class and other essays. Cambridge: CUP.

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