Books

Ernest Bevin

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Ernest Bevin Andrew Adonis Biteback, £20
With this new biography of Ernest Bevin, Andrew Adonis (former MP and cabinet minister under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown) offers a view of the trade union leader and wartime Minister for Labour as a “preeminent leader and statesman”, wishing to restore Bevin to “his rightful place among… Britain’s greatest political leaders”. This work of hagiography is cut straight from the Great Men (or Big Beast) template of history.

How Labour lost

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This is the question circulating in the minds of virtually everybody on the left in British politics. How did we go from the heady days of the General Election of 2017 to the defeat of 2019 and the subsequent resignation of the most left wing leader the labour Party has ever had? Furthermore, how is it that after five years of being at the helm of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters have left so little behind either in policy, organisation or personnel terms?

The Myth of Chinese Capitalism: the Worker, the Factory and the Future of the World Dexter Roberts St. Martin’s Press £18

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The “myth” of this book’s title is that Chinese capitalism offers a model for other developing countries. In a wide-ranging study, Dexter Roberts sets out to show that it is unsustainable. At the same time he is clearly sympathetic to the plight of China’s millions of migrant workers - the work is dedicated to them - who leave their country homes to seek jobs in the booming coastal cities. This means the book is a slightly uneasy mixture of first-hand reporting of these peoples’ lives and background from secondary sources, many business oriented.

How Trump Stole 2020 Greg Palast with illustrations by Ted Rall Seven Stories Press £13.99

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In November 2018, 92 year old Christine Jordan, a cousin of Martin Luther King and herself a veteran civil rights campaigner, went to in the election vote for Governor of Georgia. She went to the same polling station she had voted in since 1968, but ‘this time…they threw her out…they had no record of her’. She was not alone. Tens of thousands of would-be voters were turned away. How did this happen? Greg Palast has, among other things, been investigating voter fraud in the US for the past twenty years.

The Pink Line: The World’s Queer Frontiers Mark Gevisser Profile Books £25

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In The Pink Line South African journalist and filmmaker Mark Gevisser presents a perceptive and comprehensive picture of the international fight for LGBT+ rights in the twenty first century. Gevisser meticulously and sympathetically charts the harsh realities of life for many LGBT+ people as he follows their struggles with families, police and public hostility. His research took him to 21 countries, striking up relationships over a number of years with a range of activists.

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