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Much like the 1950s

David Edgar: The Sixties, 7 June 2007

White Heat: A History of Britain in the Swinging Sixties 
by Dominic Sandbrook.
Little, Brown, 878 pp., £22.50, August 2006, 0 316 72452 1
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Never Had It So Good: A History of Britain from Suez to the Beatles 
by Dominic Sandbrook.
Abacus, 892 pp., £19.99, May 2006, 0 349 11530 3
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... indulgences of the 1960s were to blame for the pathologies of the 1980s had been established. As Dominic Sandbrook points out in Never Had It So Good, the first volume of his monumental history of Britain since 1956, big guns like Norman Tebbit continued to lambast ‘the insufferable, smug, sanctimonious, naive, guilt-ridden, wet, pink orthodoxy of ...

Short Cuts

Andrew O’Hagan: The 1970s, 18 November 2010

... in popular history. David Kynaston’s magisterial accounts of postwar Britain are matched by Dominic Sandbrook, whose new one, State of Emergency: The Way We Were – Britain, 1970-74 (Allen Lane, £30), is for me a Proustian experience. The wedding of Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips on 14 November 1973 was ‘the first major royal event in ...

Astonish Mould and Mildew

Andrew O’Hagan: Bless this House with Less, 10 October 2019

Hinch Yourself Happy: All the Best Cleaning Tips to Shine Your Sink and Soothe Your Soul 
by Mrs Hinch.
Michael Joseph, 288 pp., £12.99, April 2019, 978 0 241 39975 0
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... that my mother was wiping herself away. Writing about 1982 in his latest book, Who Dares Wins, Dominic Sandbrook notes the general rise of British clutter.* Mass Observation had been asking people to describe their homes. ‘Carol Daniel,’ Sandbrook writes, was a 29-year-old Tesco shelf-stacker, living at an end ...

The Wonderfulness of Us

Richard J. Evans: The Tory Interpretation of History, 17 March 2011

... our shared memory as a living, urgently present body of knowledge’. Or, as the popular historian Dominic Sandbrook puts it, we need to return to ‘the stories that make up a nation’s collective memory, that fire the imagination, that bind the generations’ – ‘Alfred and the cakes’ or ‘Drake and the Armada’. New Labour’s legacy, Gove ...

The Doctrine of Unripe Time

Ferdinand Mount: The Fifties, 16 November 2006

Having It So Good: Britain in the Fifties 
by Peter Hennessy.
Allen Lane, 740 pp., £30, October 2006, 0 7139 9571 8
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... not surprising that Peter Hennessy should call his monumental history Having It So Good, nor that Dominic Sandbrook should call his equally monumental recent history of the late 1950s and early 1960s Never Had It So Good. This neatly illustrates the drawback of decaditis: Macmillan’s speech at Bedford football ground on 20 July 1957 points forward as ...

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