Britain since 1945: The People's Peace is the first comprehensive study by a professional historian of British history from 1945 to the present day. It examines the transformation of post-war Britain from the planning enthusiasm of 1945 to the rise of New Labour. Its themes include the troubles of the British economy; public criticism of the legitimacy of the state and its instruments of authority; the co-existence of growing personal prosperity with widespread social inequality; and the debates aroused by decolonization, and Britain's relationship to the Commonwealth, the US and Europe. Changes in cultural life, from the puritanical 'austerity' of the 1940's, through the 'permissiveness' of the 1960s, to the tensions and achievements of recent years are also charted. Using a wide variety of sources, including the records of political parties and the most recently released documents from the Public Records Office, Kenneth Morgan brings the story right up to date and draws comparisons with the post-war history of other nations. This penetrating analysis by a leading twentieth-century historian will prove invaluable to anyone interested in the development of the Britain of today.
Kenneth O. Morgan is Research Professor, University of Wales, Aberystwyth, and Honorary Fellow of The Queen's College, Oxford. He was Principal, then Vice-chancellor, University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, and Professor in the University of Wales, 1989-95. He was made a Life Peer in April 2000.