Paul Hirst

Paul Hirst is Professor of Social Theory at Birkbeck College, University of London. His After Thatcher was published by Collins earlier this year.



19 December 1991

Stephen Sedley (LRB, 19 December 1991), in the course of reviewing various proposals for a Bill of Rights for the UK, makes a series of sharply critical assertions about Charter 88. He claims that there is now such diversity in the different proposals for enacting a Bill of Rights, ranging from the IEA to Liberty, that there is ‘already no accepted minimum programme and the ground is being cut from...


Paul Hirst, 23 November 1989

It is remarkable that an essay by a State Department official in the conservative quarterly the National Interest should provoke a storm of debate in the US and be syndicated by papers throughout the world. The burden of Francis Fukuyama’s argument is that we are witnessing the end of history. That end will not be as it has so often been imagined – either apocalypse or utopia. History, in the sense of fundamental ideological and political change, will cease with the worldwide triumph of Western liberalism. The blunt political message that the Cold War is over and the West has won is softened by suitably edifying references to high social theory. Much of his essay is taken up with a discussion of Hegel. Essays of this kind do not attract massive media attention because they make the right up-market references. Fukuyama has become news because he has caught a mood and because he has justified that mood by seizing upon a fundamental and novel fact.’



9 July 1987

SIR: In seeking to defend his book Anti-Racism – An Assault on Education and Value (Letters, 3 September) against Ann Dummett’s carefully presented criticisms, Mr Frank Palmer makes a completely false accusation which, for the sake of the public record, must surely be exposed. As a member of the Swann Committee on the Education of Children from Ethnic Minority Groups and of its Research Sub-Committee...


Mary Beard, 26 October 1989

If you want to see the cutting edge of Thatcherism, go to Basingstoke. There, as we learn in Paul Hirst’s After Thatcher, the local council (careful, no doubt, with its ratepayers’...

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