Harry's Last Stand: How the World My Generation Built is Falling Down, and What We Can Do to Save it (Hardback)
  • Harry's Last Stand: How the World My Generation Built is Falling Down, and What We Can Do to Save it (Hardback)
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Harry's Last Stand: How the World My Generation Built is Falling Down, and What We Can Do to Save it (Hardback)

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£12.99
Hardback 224 Pages / Published: 05/06/2014
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‘…should be required reading for every MP, peer, councillor, civil servant and commentator. The fury and sense of powerlessness that so many people feel at government policy beam out of every page.’ – The Guardian

As one of the last remaining survivors of the Great Depression and the Second World War, I will not go gently into that good night. I want to tell you what the world looks like through my eyes, so that you can help change it...

In November 2013, 91-year-old Yorkshireman, RAF veteran and ex-carpet salesman Harry Leslie Smith's Guardian article - 'This year, I will wear a poppy for the last time' - was shared over 80,000 times on Facebook and started a huge debate about the state of society. 

A pioneering campaigner on issues including social welfare, equality and immigration, Harry Leslie Smith has been an inspiration to thousands of readers, proving that age is no barrier to political engagement. In Harry’s Last Stand, he brings his unique perspective to bear on NHS cutbacks, benefits policy, political corruption, food poverty, the cost of education - and much more. 

From the deprivation of 1930s Barnsley and the terror of war to the creation of our welfare state, Harry has experienced how a great civilisation can rise from the rubble. But at the end of his life, he fears how easily it is being eroded and, in this persuasively reasoned book, makes an impassioned plea for its preservation. Harry's Last Stand is a lyrical, searing modern invective that shows what the past can teach us, and how the future is ours for the taking.

Publisher: Icon Books Ltd
ISBN: 9781848317260
Number of pages: 224
Weight: 272 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
'A kind of epic poem, one that moves in circular fashion from passionate denunciation to intense autobiographical reflection ... should be required reading for every MP, peer, councillor, civil servant and commentator. The fury and sense of powerlessness that so many people feel at government policy beam out of every page.' - Melissa Benn, The Guardian

'Smith's unwavering will to turn things around makes for inspirational reading.' - Big Issue North

'Mr Smith's is a rousing, earthy writing that's part Tony Harrison, part Dennis Skinner' - NudgeMeNow.com

'This hymn of wrath against the toxic nexus of money and power in austerity UK from a Bradford pauper's son, excommunicated from the Catholic church for marrying an "enemy" woman in post-war Germany, is a compelling life-verdict.' - Paul Routledge, The Tablet

'Harry's Last Stand is fast becoming a well-deserved publishing phenomenon. It is a breathtaking argument, brilliantly delivered, who said only the new generation have the capacity to make a difference?' - Mark Perryman - Left Futures

'A moving first-person account from 91-year-old Harry Leslie Smith of growing up before the creation of the welfare state and NHS. Making a simple, emotive case for progressive politics, Smith was the star turn at this year's Labour party conference.' - The Guardian [Best Political Books of 2014] 

'Harry Leslie Smith is absolutely one of my heroes. Everyone should read this and be humbled.' - Annie Lennox

'It is not enough to read Harry's record of the struggles and hopes of a generation - we have to re-assert his principles of common ownership and the welfare state. If Harry can do it, we should too!' - Ken Loach

'I read Harry's Last Stand in a single sitting. Labour should read to get fire in bellies. Tories should read in shame.' - Alastair Campbell

'Seek this one out. If it doesn't make you angry there's something wrong with you. It's inspirational stuff.' - Rick O'Shea

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“A great read and very relevant just now”

A very readable account of the life of Harry Leslie Smith and a passionate statement of his political views.
If you've never read anything political before - read this - you will enjoy it and it may challenge...

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 58

“An important voice”

Prejudice is a funny thing. We are all guilty though, of judging others, and often because they are not ‘just like us’. We can misjudge the young because we have forgotten what childhood was really like and we can... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 39

“We need to learn from history...”

Prejudice is a funny thing. We are all guilty though, of judging others, and often because they are not ‘just like us’. We can misjudge the young because we have forgotten what childhood was really like and we can... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 29

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