Vernon Bogdanor--Six British Politicians who Shaped the 20th Century

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source: GreshamCollege        2012年10月29日
Winston Churchill wrote of Joseph Chamberlain, Colonial Secretary at the beginning of the 20th century, that, even though he never became Prime Minister, he 'made the weather', meaning that he played a crucial role in shaping the political agenda of his day. These lectures discuss six postwar politicians, none of whom became Prime Minister, but who, like Joseph Chamberlain, also made the weather and so helped to shape the age in which we live. For all information about this series of free public lectures by Professor Vernon Bogdanor, please visit the Gresham College website: www.gresham.ac.uk
The transcript and downloadable versions of the lectures are available from the Gresham College website: http://www.gresham.ac.uk/lectures-and...
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59:18 Aneurin Bevan and the Socialist Ideal
Aneurin Bevan was the leading postwar representative in Britain of the socialist ideal. He is best remembered for the creation of the National Health Service which he regarded as a symbol of applied socialism, a national service free at the point of use and available to all. But, even before he resigned from the postwar Labour government in 1951, this ideal was being eroded. Were his hopes doomed to disappointment?
55:42 Iain Macleod and Decolonisation
Iain Macleod was, with Joseph Chamberlain, one of two great Colonial Secretaries of the 20th century. In the early 1960s, he ensured the rapid ending of Britain's African empire. This allowed Britain to avoid the imperial traumas which afflicted France and Portugal. If the African ex-colonies choose to remain in the multi-racial Commonwealth, that in large part is due to Iain Macleod.
53:50 Roy Jenkins, Europe and the Civilised Society
Roy Jenkins was Home Secretary from 1965 to 1967 and again from 1974 to 1976. He sponsored homosexual law reform and the legalisation of abortion as well as legislation outlawing racial discrimination. He helped create what its supporters called the civilised society but its enemies labelled the permissive society. During the 1970s, Jenkins's support for European unity put him at odds with many in the Labour Party; and in 1981, he helped found the new but short-lived Social Democratic Party. Meanwhile, as President of the European Commission, he had played a fundamental part in launching the idea of European monetary union.
1:10:32 Enoch Powell and the Sovereignty of Parliament
Enoch Powell was the most powerful postwar exponent of the idea of the sovereignty of Parliament and indeed of English nationalism, opposing the coming of a multiracial society, devolution, and entry into the Common Market, as the European Union used to be called. His ideas proved unacceptable not only to Labour but also to the Conservative Party which he left in 1974. Was he, as his supporters allege, a prophet before his time; or have developments since his death shown that his fears were groundless?
50:26 Tony Benn and the Idea of Participation
Tony Benn has been the most prominent modern spokesman of the movement for participatory democracy. It was he who secured the right of hereditary peers to renounce their titles, the right of the people to vote on membership of the Common Market in the referendum of 1975, and the right of Labour Party members to choose their leader and reselect their MPs. Yet, in the Britain of the 21st century, turnout is lower than it has ever been and the desire to participate seems at a discount, especially amongst the young. Did Benn misunderstand the attitudes of the British people?
1:05:47 Sir Keith Joseph and the Market Economy
Sir Keith Joseph was the most articulate and powerful of the postwar exponents of the market economy at a time when it was distinctly unfashionable. He it was who provided the ideological dynamic for what came to be called Thatcherism. Indeed, Margaret Thatcher dedicated a volume of her autobiography to him, and declared that her reforms could never have been achieved without him. But he has also been an important influence on Tony Blair's New Labour. We still inhabit a world largely created by Keith Joseph, and we will probably continue to do so for a long time to come.

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