Hard Lines: Voices from Deep Within a Recession

1999 Manchester University Press and Mandolin

'This is a book about Britain during a time of change. Britain in the 1980s and the early to mid 1990s. Britain under the Tories, Conservative but with radical political and economic agenda. A series of Conservative governments, who did not wish to keep existing conditions unchanged. Conservatives who were anything but cautious and moderate. Conservatives who had a mandate and a mission to halt Britain's sharp economic decline which had, most analysts seem to agree, been going on since the end of the Second World War. It needed strong measures, they said, to halt this decline. Immoderate measures. This is a book about the human consequences of all of these immoderate measures.' (from the cover).

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‘A hard act to follow...the magic of his articles...a master of “method journalism.'
Manchester Evening News, 1998

*‘Beattie is askilled and sensitive listener...Hard Lines is an extraordinarily human book, showing the flesh and spirit beneath the scourge of unemployment and the shallow comforts of the entrepreneurial world of the political ‘modernisers.’’*Morning Star, 1998

*‘Compelling reading...fascinating and instructive.’*Labour History, 1999

‘This superb journalistic account will interest social, economic, and political historians, sociologists, and the general reading public.’
Choice, 1999