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Labour orators from Bevan to Miliband$
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Crines Andrew S. and Hayton Richard

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780719089800

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719089800.001.0001

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The oratory of Harold Wilson

The oratory of Harold Wilson

(p.46) 3 The oratory of Harold Wilson
Labour orators from Bevan to Miliband

Michael Hill

Manchester University Press

Harold Wilson’s leadership was characterised by a focus on renewal and the promise of a new socialism as a means of demonstrating relevance of the Labour Party in a changing world. This was symbolised by the ‘White Heat’ speech he made to the Labour Party conference of 1963, in which he linked socialism to science, planning, economic growth and the modernisation of Britain. The speech, with its commitment to harness the power of the state to modernise the British economy pleased the Labour left, whilst its commitment to economic growth mollified the right. Crucially, ‘White Heat’ also appealed to a much broader audience that Labour needed to attract in order to win the forthcoming election.

Keywords:   Wilson, White Heat, devaluation, division

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