By Tony Benn
He Benn Diaries, embracing the years 1940-1990, are already tested as a uniquely authoritative, attention-grabbing and readable checklist of political lifestyles. the chosen highlights that shape this single-volume version contain the main impressive occasions, arguments and private reflections all through Benn's lengthy and noteworthy occupation as a number one politician.
The narrative begins with Benn as a schoolboy and takes the reader via his younger wartime reports as a trainee pilot within the Royal Air strength, his fearful pleasure as a brand new MP in the course of Clement Atlee's premiership and the tribulations of Labour within the Fifties, while the Conservatives have been in company keep an eye on. It ends with the Tories back in energy, yet at the eve of Margaret Thatcher's fall, whereas Tony Benn is on a undertaking to Baghdad earlier than the upcoming Gulf War.
Over the span of 50 years, the private and non-private turmoil in British and international politics is recorded as Benn himself strikes from wartime provider to turn into the infant of the home, cupboard Minister, and at last the Commons' so much senior Labour Member.
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Additional info for The Benn Diaries: 1940-1990
Facing north, as befits an artist's studio; Halpert could have his choice of the other three rooms, east, west did not occur to me and south. He ar- and canvas, ac- that he might have a preference. rived the following weekend, carrying paints It 3i companied by another man, lanky, sandy-haired and bespectacled, whom he introduced to me as a poet who might take one of the rooms. Halpert took another room that had the second bed, but suggested that my room should be used as a common studio, moved my it being the largest.
Once, while sitting for me wearing a dressing gown, I asked her to slip it down from her shoulders so that I might include her bosom. If the rest of her was as lovely as her face, it would make a stunning picture. She refused, although pleased with my compliments. I continued life-class less my trips to the Ferrer school, often. but attended the There were always new faces, people dropping in out of curiosity or in sympathy with liberal ideas. met new writers and painters; we sat in the cafe and talked.
I had been smoking I a pipe, but soon switched to cigars to follow example. This was not an extravagance, my my companion's salary was about double of what five cents. I had earned before, and a decent cigar cost Sometimes, after the day's work, my new friend and remained in the quarter, the most interesting of New York, its theaters, movies, and big hotels. We would have a snack and take in a movie. One evening we passed a theater that was playing a musical comedy, The Chocolate Soldier, based on Bernard Shaw's Arms and the Man.
The Benn Diaries: 1940-1990 by Tony Benn