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Alice in Westminster: The Political Life of Alice Bacon

Alice in Westminster: The Political Life of Alice Bacon
Rachel Reeves

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Alice Bacon was one of the twentieth-century's most remarkable female politicians. Born and raised in the Yorkshire town of Normanton, she defied the odds to be elected Labour MP for Leeds North East in the 1945 General Election. Famed in her home town for her unlikely love of sports cars, she was a much-respected, no-nonsense, hard-working representative for her beloved Yorkshire home in Westminster. Mentored by Herbert Morrison and Hugh Gaitskell, she rose through the party becoming a Home Office minister under Roy Jenkins and latterly an Education Minister with responsibility for the introduction of comprehensive schools. In the Home Office in the 1960s she oversaw the introduction of substantial societal changes, including the abolition of the death penalty, the decriminalisation of homosexuality and the legalisation of abortion. Her political career spanned some of the most momentous decades in Britain's postwar history and she played an integral part in some of the most significant social, educational and political changes which the country has ever witnessed.Labour MP Rachel Reeves here tells Alice Bacon's story, narrating one woman's extraordinary progression from the coalfields to the Commons.

Author Info

Rachel Reeves is Labour MP for Leeds West. She was a member of Ed Miliband's Shadow Cabinet from 2013-2015.


‘Reeves clearly wants to give a forgotten woman her due, and there’s a quiet charm to this book after a year that saw competent female managers from Hillary Clinton to Angela Eagle leapfrogged by noisier men.’ - Gaby Hinsliff, Guardian Politics Books of the Year

'[A] compelling piece of Labour history and the story of a determined, witty and straight-talking woman, whose attempt to bridge divisions in her own party seems more apt now than ever before'- India Bourke, New Statesman
"We are indebted to Rachel Reeves for this biography and for filling one more gap in the so far neglected stories of Labour women." - Progress
"stunning...very much the product of intense and meticulous detective work by Rachel Reeves…excellent….superbly written" - Neil Pye, The Yorkshire Post

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.

ISBN: 9781784537685
Publication Date: 30 Nov 2016
Number of Pages: 264
Height: 226
Width: 155
Illustrations: 26 black and white illustrations in a 16 page plate section

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