Dr. Morgan has a great deal to say about the internal difficulties which centrist politics generated on the outer fringes of public life. On the whole, Lloyd George was remarkably skilful at maintaining the unity of the Cabinet at its centre. One may hope that Dr. Morgan will develop this theme later: in particular, one would like to know rather more about the relationships between the Cabinet and the Civil Service. His conclusion is bleak and challenging. The Coalition was undermined by the sectionalisms of class and party: the nation felt most secure in living on its conflicts and divisions. 'The Coalition fell not because it had governed badly, certainly not because it had been immoral or un- usually corrupt, but because major sections within British society rebelled against the constraints of unity.' There is a sense in which Lloyd George was destroyed by the ghost of Sir Robert Peel, evoked in different ways by Sir George Younger and Stanley Baldwin. This is a rich book. It also marks a stage in Dr. Morgan's development as an historian. His previous works have been monographs: he has now broadened his range, with high success. This book will be the springboard for many future studies, and is likely to be a topic of controversy for a long time to come. It is essential reading. G. H. L. LE MAY Worcester College, Oxford. HUGH Gaitskell. By Philip Williams. Jonathen Cape, 1979. Pp. 1,007. £ 15.00 With this book, more than with most, an all-round declaration of interest is essential. The dust-jacket tells us that Philip Williams has been a member of the Labour Party since he was sixteen; his first debt is to Lady Gaitskell and to her husband's literary executors, Roy Jenkins and the late Anthony Crosland, who between them commissioned the work; and the substantial volume is dedicated 'to the memory of Charles Anthony Raven Crosland, admired and beloved friend for forty years'. Williams has boldly announced his stand-point. For his part, this reviewer recalls being winkled out of an apolitical background and into the Labour movement precisely because of Gaitskell and his essentially moral stand on certain issues in the last three years of his life. At that time Gaiskell's conscience had stood out as a beacon in the moral quagmire of the nation's politics. Gaitskell's inspiration lived on, but in later years one felt relieved to have escaped from his politics of confrontation and one grew uneasy about the actions of those men who always talked of their 'love for Hugh'. So one awaited this book with both eagerness and anxiety. One wanted to know more about a man who had shown so little of himself, and yet one hesitated to look again at those ugly and raw wounds which Labour had inflicted on itself in Gaitskell's days. Given its size, it is perhaps just as well that this is a very important book, raising all kinds of fundamental questions for historians, students of British politics and especially Labour supporters. For the historians it raises, first, the question of genre. Surely the time has come for all of us
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