Books: Left-Hand Man

ENGELS, MANCHESTER, AND THE WORKING CLASS

by STEVEN MARCUS 271 pages. Random House. $8.95.

The English factory town of Manchester might be called the cradle of the Industrial Revolution were it not that more than half the working-class children born there a century ago died before the age of five. Under Manchester's pall of smoke, pale families shuffled away their lives between cotton mill and hovel. Bad air, bad food, bad laws, monotony and danger were the workers' common lot. The din of machinery was a ceaseless taunt that whatever skill remained in their hands...

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