This study examines changing conceptions of citizenship, particularly in relation to work, in Britain over the last 200 years. It traces the debates about the rights and duties of individuals and the responsibilities of the state through the long tradition of social criticism that developed in the 19th century in response to the social and economic problems of industrialization. It shows how definitions of the entitlements of citizenship have tended to move beyond basic necessities to the idea of 'inclusion', the right to take part in normal social activities. Different writers have had more or less faith in government action or in voluntary effort guided by personal moral obligation as the better way to social advance and the book demonstrates that the arguments continue as strongly as ever at the present time. It concludes with a discussion of the special problems of honouring citizenship entitlements at the end of the 20th century in a society with rising expectations, persistent high unemployment and an ageing population.