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This review is from: White Heat: A History of Britain in the Swinging Sixties 1964-1970 (Paperback)
"White Heat" carries on where Dominic Sandbrook's last book left off, with Labour winning the general election in 1964. Once again the writing switches back and forth between political and economic history and more general social history. Read back to back with the earlier volume this can be pretty hard going. Dominic Sandbrook does his best to cover every topic imaginable but by doing so creates a massive omnibus that lacks any sort of focus.
Although he claims to be unbiased some topics do receive more coverage than others. For example several chapters are dedicated to the rise (and fall) of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. While these were obviously important bands he does point out that they were outsold by the soundtrack to The Sound of Music and by the records of the more conventional Cliff Richard. Yet they receive no where near the same amount of discussion.
I was also surpised to find only one solitary line mentioning "Monty Python", while there are two whole chapters about "Till Death Us Do Part" and the Carry On films. Although Python did not air until 1969 I would have thought that the emergence of satire (via "The Goon Show") leading to the more surrealist comedy of Python would have been worth covering.
I realise that even in a book this size you can't cover everything. But with such a lot of space taken up discussing the Department of Economic Affairs (which seemed to achieve very little) a little more time spent on everyday life in the 1960's would have made this book easier and more enjoyable to read.