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Nemesis

David Marquand

22 January 1981
Change and Fortune 
by Douglas Jay.
Hutchinson, 515 pp., £16, June 1980, 0 09 139530 5
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Life and Labour 
by Michael Stewart.
Sidgwick, 288 pp., £12.50, November 1980, 0 283 98686 7
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... tradition in British left-wing politics. These two volumes of autobiography bring back its great days: in doing so, they also throw a good deal of unintentional light on the reasons for its fall. MichaelStewart and Douglas Jay were both awarded Firsts at Oxford in the Twenties, entered Labour politics in the Thirties, held junior office in the Attlee Government in the Forties, supported Gaitskell in ...

Roll Call

Michael Stewart

5 September 1985
Crowded Hours 
by Eric Roll.
Faber, 254 pp., £15, July 1985, 0 571 13497 1
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... Lord Roll is a very distinguished man, who has levitated over a period of 70 years or so from a small village in an obscure corner of Central Europe to the topmost rank of the British Establishment. He has had three separate careers. First he was an academic, writing among other things A History of Economic Thought, a valuable introduction to the subject still in print almost 50 years after its first ...
5 July 1984
Controlling the Economic Future: Policy Dilemmas in a Shrinking World 
by Michael Stewart.
Harvester, 192 pp., £18.95, November 1983, 0 7108 0182 3
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In Defence of the Mixed Economy 
by Andrew Shonfield, edited by Zuzanna Shonfield.
Oxford, 231 pp., £15, February 1984, 0 19 215359 5
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The Welfare State in Crisis: Social Thought and Social Change 
by Ramesh Mishra.
Harvester, 208 pp., £15.95, December 1983, 0 7108 0240 4
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... crumbled. Instead of abandoning the economics and sticking to the politics, we should be trying to revise the politics so as to make the economics workable again. Revision is needed in two areas. As MichaelStewart shows in his brilliant and disturbing analysis of the political economy of global interdependence and tightening resource constraints, conventional post-Keynesian economic management is ...

Atone and Move Forward

Michael Stewart

11 December 1997
Balkan Justice: The Story behind the First International War Crimes Trial since Nuremberg 
by Michael​ Scharf.
Carolina, 340 pp., $28, October 1997, 0 89089 919 3
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The Tenth Circle of Hell: A Memoir of Life in the Death Camps of Bosnia 
by Rezak Hukanovic.
Little, Brown, 164 pp., £14.99, May 1997, 0 316 63955 9
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Burn This House: The Making and Unmaking of Yugoslavia 
edited by Jasminka Udovicki and James Ridgeway.
Duke, 326 pp., $49.95, November 1997, 0 8223 1997 7
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A Safe Area: Srebrenica, Europe’s Worst Massacre since the Second World War 
by David Rohde.
Simon and Schuster, 440 pp., £8.99, June 1997, 0 671 00499 9
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Triumph of the Lack of Will: International Diplomacy and the Yugoslav War 
by James Gow.
Hurst, 343 pp., £14.95, May 1997, 1 85065 208 2
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... which could be a standing caution to politicians tempted by a policy of mass criminality. The story of the creation of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), as told by Michael Scharf, a one-time US appointee at the UN and a Tribunal insider, is full of unexpected and telling ironies. Not the least of these concerns the involvement of the US Administration, which had ...

1966 and all that

Michael Stewart

20 December 1984
The Castle Diaries. Vol. II: 1964-70 
by Barbara Castle.
Weidenfeld, 848 pp., £20, October 1984, 0 297 78374 2
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... There are, one might venture to suggest, two kinds of people: those whose New Year resolution to keep a diary peters out on 5 January, and those who are still hard at it on 31 December. We are surely fortunate that Barbara Castle – like the late Dick Crossman – is in the second category. And when Mrs Castle keeps a diary, she doesn’t mess about: she really keeps a diary. The indefatigability ...

Diary

Michael Stewart: Staggeringly Complacent

6 June 1985
... The arguments about the miners’ strike will go on for a long time yet, as is evident from Richard Hyman’s piece on another page. My own view remains essentially what it was when I wrote what turned out to be a controversial article last summer (LRB, 6 September 1984). Mr Scargill’s demand that no pit be closed except on grounds of exhaustion was economic nonsense; his attempt to achieve his aims ...

Nanny knows best

Michael Stewart

4 June 1987
Kinnock 
by Michael​ Leapman.
Unwin Hyman, 217 pp., £11.95, May 1987, 0 04 440006 3
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The Thatcher Years: A Decade of Revolution in British Politics 
by John Cole.
BBC, 216 pp., £12.95, April 1987, 0 563 20572 5
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Thatcherism and British Politics: The End of Consensus? 
by Dennis Kavanagh.
Oxford, 334 pp., £22.50, March 1987, 0 19 827522 6
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The New Right: The Counter-Revolution in Political, Social and Economic Thought 
by David Green.
Wheatsheaf, 238 pp., £22.50, March 1987, 0 7450 0127 0
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... in order, so to speak, to get him out of the way. If one’s view is that Neil Kinnock is a good man in a position made impossible by historical developments, one will not find much in either Michael Leapman’s sympathetic and readable portrait, or John Cole’s lively and good-humoured canter over the events of the last decade, to change one’s mind. The nature of the Labour Party’s – and ...

Sterling and Strings

Peter Davies: Harold Wilson and Vietnam

20 November 2008
... repeatedly defended the American position in exchanges with the Soviet Union, the Commonwealth and Britain’s European allies. He also defended it in the House of Commons, and the foreign secretary, MichaelStewart, even appeared on television to defend American actions. At a televised ‘teach in’ in Oxford in June 1965, Stewart argued that ‘the future relationship between North and South could, in ...

The Miners’ Strike

Michael Stewart

6 September 1984
... The present miners’ strike compels an appalled fascination of a kind quite different from that exercised by other industrial disputes. It grips like a thriller. It is partly the question – identified by E.M. Forster as a simple but fundamental aspect of the novel – of what happens next. Will other unions be drawn in? Will we be into power cuts by Christmas? What will Mrs Thatcher do then? It ...

Hattersley’s Specifics

Michael Stewart

19 March 1987
Choose freedom: The Future for Democratic Socialism 
by Roy Hattersley.
Joseph, 265 pp., £12.95, January 1987, 0 7181 2483 9
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Power, Competition and the State. Vol. I: Britain in Search of Balance, 1940-61 
by Keith Middlemas.
Methuen, 404 pp., £25, October 1986, 0 333 41412 8
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... Tony Crosland’s epoch-making book The Future of Socialism was published in 1956. That Roy Hattersley’s aim is to don the master’s mantle in the late 1980s is evident not only from his book’s subtitle, but also from his brief account of a conversation he had with Tony Crosland a week before the latter’s fatal stroke. ‘Give me,’ said Crosland, ‘a simple definition of socialism’. Hattersley ...

Going for Gould

R.W. Johnson

23 July 1987
Apocalypse 2000: Economic Breakdown and the Suicide of Democracy 1989-2000 
by Peter Jay and Michael Stewart.
Sidgwick, 254 pp., £12.95, June 1987, 0 283 99440 1
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... election out of the way, considerable attention has begun to fasten on two prognostications of impending global doom, one by Felix Rohatyn in the New York Review of Books, the other by Peter Jay and MichaelStewart. It is perhaps too easy to mock Apocalypse 2000 as being full of Oxford PPE clevernesses, and some of its predictions (e.g. the maintenance of military rule in South Korea) look like going ...
15 November 1984
... In January 1984, two months into an overtime ban, with the spectre of strike hanging over us, if anyone had asked me, ‘If we strike how long will we be out?’ I certainly would not have said eight months. But here we are: 32 weeks on strike, and prepared to do another 32 if need be. Why? Principles. To protect our jobs and, above all, our communities. On 6 March 1984 Cortonwood Colliery NUM branch ...
17 August 1989
The Little Platoon: Diplomacy and the Falklands Dispute 
by Michael​ Charlton.
Blackwell, 230 pp., £14.95, June 1989, 0 631 16564 9
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... When the Falklands War broke out, the Permanent Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign Office was Sir Michael Palliser. He was not disposed to blame his department for the catastrophe. Unlike the Prime Minister, for whom the war was proof of Foreign Office incompetence if not perfidy, Sir Michael pleaded ...
26 November 1987
Out of the Wilderness: Diaries 1963-67 
by Tony Benn.
Hutchinson, 592 pp., £14.95, October 1987, 0 09 170660 2
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... relief and enthusiasm to a contemporary diary. And those who keep good diaries get their reward. If we see the politics of the Sixties more from the point of view of Richard Crossman than, say, of MichaelStewart, the reason is that Crossman kept a diary and Stewart did not. Nevertheless, the possibility of publication is seldom the only reason for keeping a diary. Like any habit that becomes ...

At the Movies

Michael​ Wood: ‘The Shop around the Corner’

6 January 2011
The Shop around the Corner 
directed by Ernst Lubitsch.
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... not of gold then of malleable tin – haven’t we seen him before, and why are we so convinced of his secret benevolence? We have. And we know him as Frank Morgan, alias the Wizard of Oz. And James Stewart, looking much younger than the wry, unageing James Stewart of legend and memory (he was 32 when he made this movie) – why doesn’t he seem more out of place? James Stewart, the man from Laramie ...

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