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Blair (Haus Publishing - British Prime Ministers) Paperback – October 13, 2006

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Product Details

  • Series: Haus Publishing - British Prime Ministers
  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Haus Publishing; 1st edition (October 13, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904950736
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904950738
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.5 x 7.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,252,352 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Mick Temple is a senior lecturer in Politics and Journalism at Staffordshire University. His books include How Britain Works: From Ideology to Output Politics (Macmillan, 2000), an accessible and readable account of the recent changes in British government, which Simon Jenkins said raised questions that 'deserve to ring alarm bells throughout British public administration and politics'. Dr Temple has published many articles on politics including Anthony Giddens, Tony Blair and the Third Way (2001).

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Format: Paperback
Despite having resigned as prime minister in 2007, Tony Blair remains a controversial figure. Now out of office, his legacy is in the hands of historians and biographers, and if Mick Temple offers any portents, their judgments will be harsh. Written as Blair's premiership was coming to an end, Temple's biography offers an early assessment of what Blair accomplished - and what he didn't - during his time at Downing Street.

Temple begins by focusing on Blair's early years. Here the women assume considerable prominence, beginning with Blair's mother, Hazel. Temple sees her as essential to understanding Blair's basic values and her death as the catalyst for his political career. Key to this career is Blair's wife Cherie, whose personal and political partnership is viewed by Temple as the bedrock of his life. Though the more devoted Labour Party member, she set her political aspirations aside after he won election to Parliament in 1983, helping him instead as he began his meteoric rise from the ranks to assume the leadership of the party barely a decade later.

Blair's success was due to a combination of charm and aggressive campaigning after the unexpected death of John Smith in 1994. The aura of optimism and change he projected also proved key three years later in his triumph over an exhausted Conservative Party. This aura dissipated as the image of "New Labour" soon became tarnished by scandal, yet Temple ultimately places the blame for the unfulfilled expectations squarely on Blair's shoulders. In the end, he argues, it is Blair himself who, like his predecessor Harold Wilson, failed to follow through on the promises of change and left little more than a legacy of sleaze and disappointment.
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