Now the War Is Over

Paul Addison
Date Published
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‘An excellent book.’ Angus Calder, London Review of Books

First published in 1985, based on an acclaimed BBC TV series, Paul Addison’s Now The War is Over examines the great changes in British society that followed hard upon what had been the most destructive war ever known: years of recovery and reform, as Britain was reshaped by high ideals and a collective desire to enjoy the fruits and opportunities of peacetime.

Labour was elected in 1945 on a wave of what Addison calls ‘Forties collectivism.’ Soon Britons would have the benefits of Beveridge’s Welfare State, new housing, secondary education for all and, in July 1948, the dawning of the National Health Service. But new interests in consumerism and the pursuit of affluence were also emerging and, as Addison shows in this rich and fascinating study, would prove just as influential as the efforts of government.


Paul Addison, born 1943, is a historian based at the University of Edinburgh. His interests lie in the social and political history of twentieth-century Britain. The author of many books, his Churchill on the Home Front, 1900-1955 and Now the War is Over: A Social History of Britain, 1945-1951 are being reissued in Faber Finds. As is The Burning Blue:…

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