IN MY WAY: The Political Memoirs of Lord George-Brown by George Brown

IN MY WAY: The Political Memoirs of Lord George-Brown

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KIRKUS REVIEW

I'm given to being slightly uncontrolled,"" says George Brown, the ebullient British politician-trade unionist and Labour Deputy Prime Minister in the Wilson government from 1964 to 1968 when he resigned in a huff. in this characteristically bright, frank, adrenal, sometimes quarrelsome and boorish political summing up, Brown, now a life peer, natters about his working class origins, education, entry into the trade union movement, eventual election to Parliament in 1945 and quick rise in Labour Party circles. He is most eager, however, to get in his innings against Harold Wilson with whom he had ""strained relations,"" especially since his old rival for the leadership has now published his own recollections (see Wilson's Personal Record). Consequently Brown spends considerable time relating exactly how it was and what he did and did not do or say during his years as deputy and cabinet minister, first as head of the new Department of Economic Affairs (""a social revolution that failed"") and later as Foreign Secretary where he had his best success. Much of the interest centers on Brown's famous (and final) resignation -- he devotes an entire chapter to the episode -- which he calls ""a watershed in my own life,"" adding, incredibly, ""and, I think, in our recent political history."" Wilson and Brown's accounts are at odds about George's leave-taking and who is telling the truth about this matter and others of a less spectacular turn is open to question and the historians. There is much else here of interest -- reflections on the Middle East, Europe, and key world political figures of his time, e.g., Dean Rusk (""honest to the last cog""), Kosygin (""a total Communist Party official""). Mainly this is George Brown waffling.

Pub Date: Nov. 15th, 1971
Publisher: St. Martin's Press