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Establishment and Meritocracy and Reflections on Election 2015

Sunday 29 March 2015

1 Hour


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Ticket price

Britain’s leading contemporary historian Lord Peter Hennessy benefitted from the opportunity to climb the ladder set up by the 1944 Education Act. Here he examines the notion of a meritocracy and of a shadowy establishment. Do notions of meritocracy and establishment still have value when discussing British society and its institutions? Are they imagined concepts? And did a meritocracy rise in Britain following the war years? Hennessy will also offer some thoughts on the current state of the political parties and the prospects for this year’s General Election.

Hennessy is Attlee Professor of Contemporary British History at Queen Mary, University of London, a crossbench peer and a former lobby correspondent.  He spent 20 years as a journalist variously working for The Times, the Financial Times and The Economist and co-founded the Institute of Contemporary British History. He hosts a new series, Reflections, on BBC Radio 4, where he asks senior politicians to reflect on their life and times and the people who influenced their views.

Supported by Ian and Carol Sellars.