Cover Description

The New Labour Reader draws together in one accessible volume a set of authoritative interpretations and accounts of New Labour in government, including key commentaries on the contemporary Labour Party and the Blair government. 

Using a variety of primary and secondary sources, the book maps out and explains New Labour’s political trajectory, the policy agenda it has pursued and the process by which it governs. It uses excerpts from the best and most interesting material, including the writings and speeches of the Labour government’s most influential figures. There are chapters on the New Labour debate, economic policy, the public services, constitutional reform, European policy and Labour’s Whitehall style, as well as a critical introduction by the editors.

The Reader provides an initial point of access to the varied literature on this subject and is an essential reference for understanding the wide-ranging implications of the New Labour “project.” It will be a vital resource for all who study the subject.

Table of Contents

Publisher’s Note.
Introduction: The New Labour Phenomenon (Andrew Chadwick and Richard Heffernan)

Part I: The New Labour Debate

1. The Third Way: New Politics for the New Century (Tony Blair)
2. The Third Way: The Renewal of Social Democracy (Anthony Giddens)
3. The Land that Labour Forgot (Philip Gould)
4. The Ideology of New Labour (Michael Freeden)
5. New Labour and Thatcherism (Richard Heffernan)
6. The Political Economy of New Labour (Colin Hay)
7. Interpreting New labour: Constraints, Dilemmas and Political Agency (Michael Kenny and Martin J. Smith)
8. The Blair Paradox (David Marquand)
9. The Great Moving Newhere Show (Stuart Hall)
10. Corporate Populism and Partyless Democracy (Anthony Barnett)

Part II: Prudent for a Purpose? New Labour’s Economic Policy.

11. Safety First: The Making of New Labour (Paul Anderson and Nyta Mann)
12. Labour’s Business Manifesto: Equipping Britain for the Future (The Labour Party)
13. “Prudence will be our Watchword’: Chancellor’s Speech at the Mansion House, 1998 (Gordon Brown)
14. Open Macroeconomics in an Open Economy (Edward Balls)
15. Europe: the Third Way/Die Neue Mitte (Tony Blair and Gerhard Schroder)
16. New Keynesianism and New Labour (Will Hutton)
17. President’s Speech to the TUC Congress, September 2001 (Bill Morris)
18. Did Things Get Better? An Audit of Labour’s Successes and Failures (Polly Toynbee and David Walker)

Part III: realizing Citizenship? Labour and Public Services
19. The Third Way: New Politics for the New Century (Tony Blair)
20. Equality - Then and Now
21. The Third Way Begins with CORA (Julian Le Grand)
22. Government Must Reconsider its Strategy for More Equal Society (Ruth Lister and Others)
23. Bringing Britain Together: A National Strategy for Neighbourhood Renewal (Cabinet Office Social Exclusion Unit)
24. Excellence in Schools (Department for Education and Employment)
25. The New NHS: Modern, Dependable (Department of Health)
26. How Big Money is Stitching Up the NHS (Will Hutton)
27. New Labour: Politics after Thatcherism (Stephen Driver and Luke Martell)
28. From Welfare State to Post-Welfare Society? Labour’s Social Policy in Historical and Contemporary Perspective (Nick Ellison)

Part IV: Modernizing the United Kingdom? Labour’s Constitutional Agenda
29. Modernising Government (The Cabinet Office)
30. Foreword to Scotland’s Parliament (Donald Dewar)
31. Human Rights Act 1998
32. A Mayor and Assembly for London (Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions)
33. The Jenkins Commission report on the Voting System (Jenkins Commission)
34. Response to the Jenkins Commission report (Jack Straw)
35. The House of Lords: completing the reform (Lord Chancellor’s Department)
36. The Nature of the British-Irish Agreement (Brendan O'Leary)

Part V: Britain in the World, Labour in the European Union
37. From Hostility to ‘Constructive Engagement’: the Europeanisation of the Labour Party (Philip Daniels)
38. New Labour - New Europe? (Kirsty Hughes and Edward Smith)
39. Speech at the Launch of the Britain in Europe Campaign, October 1999 (Tony Blair)
40. Europe - Superpower, not Superstate: Speech in warsaw, October 2000 (Tony Blair)
41. Speech at the Mansion House, June 2001 (Gordon Brown)
42. Statement on European Monetary Union to the House of Commons, October 1997 (Gordon Brown)
43. The Blair Government and Europe (Philip Stephens)
44. Britain in the World: Speech to The Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House, January 2000 (Robin Cook)
45. The Doctrine of the International community, April 1999 (Tony Balir)

Part IV: A New Whitehall Style? New Labour in Government
46. Servants of the People: The Inside Story of New Labour (Andrew Rawnsley)
47. The British Presidency: Tony Blair and the Politics of Public Leadership (Michael Foley)
48. Tony Blair as Prime Minister (Peter Hennessy)
49. The Powers Behind the Prime Minister (Dennis Kavanagh and Anthony Seldon)
50. Tony Blair (John Rentoul)
51. Lies, damn Lies…and Political Spin (Ivor Gaber)
52. The Hand of History: New Labour, News Management and Governance (Bob Franklin)
53. Sultans of Spin: the Media and the New Labour Government (Nicholas Jones)
54. The Electronic Face of Government in the Internet Age (Andrew Chadwick)
55. The Commons: Mr. Blair’s Lapdog (Philip Cowley)

Publisher: Polity
May 2003
Paperback, 352 pages
Also available: Hardcover

Advance Praise

“New Labour has many roots and has had many attempted rationalizations since 1994. For the first time, the debate about what New Labour means has been brought under the same covers in a comprehensive collection of both explanations and analyses—showing not only its diversity, but also a largely unappreciated consistency in its central strategy.” – Peter Riddell, The Times

Post-Publication Review

“the introduction by the editors offers a thoughtful review of the key issues surveyed. Fully justifying its claims to offer the reader a set of authoritative interpretations and accounts of New Labour in government, the book is strongly recommended for all students of the Labour Party.”—Dr Eric Shaw in Parliamentary Affairs 57 (2), p. 497.

Links and Further Information

— The New Labour Reader Website (archived 2007). This site provided extra material, including detailed contents listings, sample chapters, an exclusive online chapter, a downloadable mp3 audio lecture by me, chapter-by-chapter annotated web links, essay questions, seminar ideas, further reading and feedback opportunities. It was originally hosted at Polity’s website but can now be accessed at the Internet Archive.


Amazon: UK | USA
Polity: UK | USA (Wiley)