First published in 2010, this book explores the legacy of the baby boomers: the generation who, born in the aftermath of the Second World War, came of age in the radical sixties where for the first time since the War, there was freedom, money, and safe sex.
In this book, Francis Beckett argues that what began as the most radical-sounding generation for half a century turned into a random collection of youthful style gurus, sharp-toothed entrepreneurs and management consultants who believed revolution meant new ways of selling things; and Thatcherites, who thought freedom meant free markets, not free people. At last, it found its most complete expression in New Labour.
The author argues that the children of the 1960s betrayed the generations that came before and after, and that the true legacy of the swinging decade is in ashes.
Table of Contents
Author’s note and acknowledgements; Introduction 1. How the baby boomers got their freedom: 1945-51 2. When we were very young: 1950-1956 3. The cradle of the sixties: 1956 4. The baby boomers go to school 5. What if Mr Macmillan’s out? 1957-63 6. The very model of a modern fluent technocrat: 1964-67 7. The end of the adventure: 1968 8. How the baby boomers destroyed the trade unions and made Thatcherism: 1969-79 9. The radical conservatives: 1979-97 10. The baby boomer Prime Ministers: 1994-2010 11. The children of the baby boomers; Notes; Index