George Kerevan reviewed Christopher Harvie’s Broonland: The Last Days of Gordon Brown for the Scotsman:
An impish romp through the New Labour era … with Brown cast as a socialist Faust seduced by the capitalist Mephistopheles of the City of London.
(Harvie)’s unique skill is having an eye for the curious and complex interconnections between making money and making culture. This book covers everything from organised crime to football.
..if you like writing stuffed with fascinating ideas, to the point that the sentences burst like a badly wrapped present from an enthusiastic friend, then dip in.
Read the full article here.
Christopher Harvie is Member of the Scottish Parliament for Mid Scotland and Fife. Harvie is visiting professor at Strathclyde and Aberystwyth universities and serves on the board of the European Centre for Federalism Studies, Tübingen, Germany.
The Broonland launch will be held on Wednesday March 31 at Bookmarks, London – Chris Harvie will be in conversation with Andy Beckett about the Last Days of Gordon Brown, chaired by Jonathan Derbyshire, culture editor of the New Statesman. Andy Beckett writes for the Guardian and his latest book, When the Lights Went Out: Britain in the Seventies, is now available in paperback.
April 6 / David’s Bookshop, Letchworth Garden City
April 7 / Housmans Bookshop, London
April 8 / 4.30pm, The Scottish Question in the British Election: a discourse at the Institute of Historical Research
The historians Professor Tom Gallagher (Bradford) and Prof Christopher Harvie (Tuebingen, and an SNP MSP) authors respectively of ‘The Illusion of Freedom’ and ‘Broonland’ debate the interplay of history, personality and policy in the Scottish dimension of the coming election.
April 8 / 7pm, Socialist History Society: “The last days of Gordon Brown?” at Conway Hall (Bertrand Russell Room), London
TO BE CONTINUED…
Broonland is a scathing and witty indictment of the architect of New Labour, Gordon Brown. Chris Harvie shows how Gordon Brown came to preside over a bankrupt country on the brink of economic and political breakdown. Taking us on a tour of Britain over the last decade, he explores the ever-widening disparity between rich and poor, and how manufacturing was replaced by ‘retail, entertainment and recreation’ – otherwise known as shopping, gambling and drinking. Looking at how a deregulated, casino economy veered wildly out of control, and how Britain’s public utilities and industries were privatized and sold off to the highest bidder, Broonland is both an essential anatomy of New Labour’s bankrupt policies and a caustic portrait of a decade that went from boom to bust.