Late each night for over 25 years, the Labour MP and former Secretary of State Tony Benn sat alone and dictated onto tape his account of the daily events at the heart of government. Here, in the second highly acclaimed Radio 4 series, he reveals what he discovered from his scrutiny of the nuclear industry and why he now believes nuclear power is unsafe.
Late each night for over 25 years, the Labour MP and former Secretary of State Tony Benn sat alone and dictated onto tape his account of the daily events at the heart of government. The immediacy, passion, and mood is striking as he unburdens himself of the pressure and stress, trials and tribulations of government and opposition, with accounts veering from anecdotal to almost confessional.
Tony Benn's diaries began in 1940, and have been compared to those of Pepys in their detail, scope, and accuracy. This volume brings them right up to date, covering the Gulf War, the rise of New Labour, international repercussions of American foreign policy, and reactions against it.
"A unique insight into 1990s British Politics"
In this final volume of diaries, Tony Benn reflects on the compensations and the disadvantages of old age. With the support of a small circle of friends and his extended family, he continues his activities on behalf of social justice, peace and accountability in public life, to a background of political change and the international economic crisis.
This abridged audio edition of the Diaries, read by the author, conveys even more directly than the Diaries themselves the achievements, conflicts, and dramatic events in a unique political life.
'As a diarist I have chronicled the time through which I have lived in meticulous detail: but all that is history. What matters now is the future for those who will live through it. The past is the past but there may be lessons to be learned which could help the next generation to avoid mistakes their parents and grandparents made. Certainly at my age I have learned an enormous amount from the study of history.' (Tony Benn)
"Inspirational. A Great Read"
Born into a family with a strong, radical dissenting tradition in which enterprise and public service were combined, Tony Benn was taught to believe that the greatest sins in life was to waste time and money.
After he announced his retirement to 'spend more time with politics', much-loved parliamentarian Tony Benn brought his unmistakable presence to the stage in a sell-out 'Evening with' event. His only props: a flask of tea, some rubbed tobacco, and his trademark pipe.... An Audience with Tony Benn is a mix of politics, opinion, and debate as the man himself explores issues of today spiced with memories of the past. He then fields questions from a live audience, answered with his usual mixture of insight, analysis, and piercing wit.
When Tony Benn left Parliament after 51 years he quoted his wife Caroline's remark that now he would have "more time for politics". And so this has proved: in the first seven years of this century he has helped reinvigorate national debate through public meetings, mass campaigns, and appearances in the media, passionately bringing moral and political issues to wide audiences. And throughout, as ever, he has been keeping his diaries.