Event Date: 20 February 2014
Birkbeck Main Building
Birkbeck, University of London
London WC1E 7HX
Professor Peter Hennessy in Conversation with Professor Tony Wright
PROFESSOR PETER HENNESSY (Baron Hennessy of Nympsfield) is Attlee Professor of Contemporary British History at Queen Mary University and a crossbench member of the House of Lords. He is the leading historian of post-1945 Britain, especially its politics and politicians, which he writes (and speaks) about in a vivid and witty way. His many books and his journalism offer trenchant analysis of the British constitution and the ‘hidden wiring’ of government , including the secret state and the bomb. Books include Distilling the Frenzy: Writing the History of One’s Own Times (2012) Cabinets and the Bomb (2007) Having It So Good: Britain in the Fifties (2006) The Secret State: Whitehall and the Cold War (2002) The Prime Minister: The Office and its Holders since 1945 (2000) The Hidden Wiring: Unearthing the British Constitution (1995) Never Again: Britain 1945-51 (1992) Whitehall (1989) and Cabinet (1986). This ‘conversation’ will range widely over Peter’s many interests and offers an opportunity to hear from someone with a unique place in the study of the recent history of British politics and society.
Professor Tony Wright is Professorial Fellow in Politics at Birkbeck College and Professor of Politics at UCL. MP for Cannock Chase from 1992 to 2010, he chaired the Reform of the House of Commons Committee (publishing the report ‘Rebuilding the House’ in 2009.) He chaired the Public Administration Committee of the House of Commons from 1999 to 2010. He has been co- editor of Political Quarterly since 1995. His most recent publications are Doing Politics (2012), British Politics: A Very Short Introduction (2nd ed, 2013) and an article asking ‘What is it about Politicians? in the current edition of Political Quarterly.