On the Back of an Envelope: A Life in Writing

Pre-Order   Ships 7 November 2024
21,000+ Reviews
Bookshop.org has the highest-rated customer service of any bookstore in the world


As one of Britain's foremost constitutional experts and contemporary historians, Peter Hennessy has spent his professional life unpicking the arcane world of Whitehall and Westminster. He began his career as a journalist on The Times, the Economist and the Financial Times, developing a network of insider contacts who helped him to shine a light on some of the dustiest corners of the British establishment. As a journalist, prize-winning contemporary historian and political commentator he has chronicled the workings of the British state with wit, affection and a healthy sense of the absurd over a five-decade career. Now a crossbench peer, he has, in his own words, 'moved in with his exhibits'. Hennessy is also a stalwart of BBC election night coverage, and a regular commentator on Radio 4, bringing a historical and constitutional perspective on current events.

In this new volume, he brings together selected journalism, unpublished lectures and new writing alongside personal recollections and reflections on his time observing post-war Britain, how it is governed and those who do the governing. He reflects on the making and unmaking of Prime Ministers from Attlee to Truss, life in the House of Lords, and the changing constitutional landscape in the wake of Brexit and in the midst of uncertainty about the Union. Interspersed with lectures, journalism and new pieces, Hennessy looks back at a fascinating career, reflecting on his own experiences as a green young graduate navigating the hard-nosed world of Fleet Street in the 1970s, bringing to life a cast of characters from a world now largely gone. He also revisits his time as a public historian, academic and crossbench peer with a levity reflected in his belief that history is 'gossip with footnotes'.

Product Details

£30.00  £28.50
Haus Publishing
Publish Date
BIC Categories:

Earn By Promoting Books

Earn money by sharing your favourite books through our Affiliate programme.

Become an Affiliate
We use cookies and similar methods to recognize visitors and remember their preferences. We also use them to help detect unauthorized access or activity that violate our terms of service, as well as to analyze site traffic and performance for our own site improvement efforts. To learn more about these methods, including how to disable them view our Cookie Policy.