Farming, Fascism and Ecology: A life of Jorian Jenks

Farming, Fascism and Ecology: A life of Jorian Jenks

by Philip M. Coupland

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The life of Jorian Jenks (1899-1963) has great potential to upset settled assumptions. Why did a sensitive and intelligent man from a liberal family become a fascist? How did a Blackshirt go green?

The son of an eminent academic, from his childhood onwards Jenks instead longed to farm. Lacking the means to do so, he worked as a farm bailiff and then, in New Zealand, as a government agricultural instructor. Finally, a legacy permitted him to come home and become a tenant farmer. Struggling to survive in the economic depression of the 1930s, he became an author and activist for rural reconstruction. Then, having lost faith in the established parties, he joined the British Union of Fascists. Becoming one of the Blackshirts’ leading figures, he was imprisoned without trial during the war. On his release, Jenks returned to the struggle, this time in the cause of ecology, becoming a pioneer of today’s organic movement and a founder of the Soil Association.

This book draws on an extensive range of sources, a large proportion of which were previously unseen by historians. For the first time, it portrays the private and public life of this unusual man, revealing many hitherto un-glimpsed facets of Jenks’ life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781317300212
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 09/19/2016
Series: Routledge Studies in Fascism and the Far Right
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
File size: 6 MB

About the Author

Philip M. Coupland is a researcher and author. He has published a book on the British churches and European integration, and has written widely on aspects of British interwar fascism.

Table of Contents


1. Roots

2. Shoots

3. Agricultural Education

4. Wanderlust

5. London Interlude

6. Superphosphate

7. A Small Legacy

8. Devon

9. An Interesting South-Coast Farm

10. Farming and Money

11. Another Cobbett

12. The Land and the People

13. Pigs and Pen

14. A Farmer’s Philosophy

15. War

16. 18B / 2732

17. J.J. Zeal

18. The Rural Reconstruction Association

19. Church and Countryside

20. Untouchable

21. Through the Tunnel

22. The Organic Movement

23. ‘A Young Plant of Great Promise’

24. Resurrection of the RRA

25. The Soil Association

26. From the Ground Up

27. Rural Economy Ltd

28. Feeding the Fifty Million

29. The Whole Works

30. Return

Epilogue. Jorian Jenks’ Legacy: Green and Black


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