Welfare since 1945 : rewriting the history of Britain’s welfare state

Harris, Bernard (2006) Welfare since 1945 : rewriting the history of Britain’s welfare state. Twentieth Century British History, 17 (1). pp. 103-109. ISSN 0955-2359 (https://doi.org/10.1093/tcbh/hwi050)

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The Welfare state in Britain since 1945. By Rodney Lowe. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, 2005. xi + 513 pp. ISBN 1-4039-1192-4 (hardback), £49.50; 1-4039-1193-2 (paperback), £16.99. A More Equal Society? New Labour, Poverty, Inequality and Exclusion. Edited by John Hills and Kitty Stewart. Policy Press, Bristol, 2005. xv + 391 pp. ISBN 1-86124-578-X (hardback), £55.00; 1-86134-577-1 (paperback), £19.99. Better or Worse? Has New Labour Delivered? By Polly Toynbee and David Walker. Bloomsbury, London, 2005. 346 pp. ISBN 0-7475-7982-2 (paperback), £7.99. Rodney Lowe published the first edition of his history of the post-war British welfare state in 1993, and it quickly established itself as the standard reference point for the study of welfare policy in this period. Its status was reinforced by the publication of a second edition in 1999 and a third edition duly appeared in 2005. The new edition comes in a more ‘student-friendly’ format, and carries the story of welfare policy three-quarters of the way through New Labour's second term.