Dominic Sandbrook

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Dominic Sandbrook
Born (1974-10-02) 2 October 1974 (age 42)
Bridgnorth, Shropshire, England
Residence Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire
Nationality British
Alma mater Jesus College, Cambridge
Occupation Hstorian · author · television and radio presenter
Spouse(s) Catherine (m. 7 July 2007)
Website dominicsandbrook.com

Dominic Sandbrook (born 2 October 1974)[1][2] is a British historian, author, columnist and television presenter.[3]

Early life and career[edit]

Born in Bridgnorth, Shropshire, he was educated at Malvern College[4][5] and studied at Balliol College, Oxford, the University of St Andrews and Jesus College, Cambridge.

Previously a lecturer in history at the University of Sheffield, he has been a senior fellow of the Rothermere American Institute at Oxford University and a member of its history faculty. Sandbrook is now visiting professor at King's College London,[6] and a freelance writer and newspaper columnist. In 2007 he was named one of Waterstone's 25 Authors for the Future.

Writings[edit]

Sandbrook's first book, a biography of the American politician and presidential candidate Eugene McCarthy, proved extremely controversial on its publication in the United States in 2004. Writing for H-Net, the interdisciplinary forum for scholars in the humanities and social sciences, David Stebenne said the book "describes McCarthy's life and work with outstanding grace and clarity", and was "a very fine study of a significant figure that serious students of American postwar history will want to consult."[7] McCarthy himself called the book "almost libellous".[8]

In 2005, Sandbrook published Never Had It So Good, a history of Britain from the Suez Crisis to The Beatles, 1956–63. It was described as a "rich treasure chest of a book" by Anthony Howard in The Daily Telegraph, who wrote of his "respect for the sweep and scope of the author's knowledge".[9] Nick Cohen wrote in The Observer that it was "a tribute to Sandbrook's literary skill that his scholarship is never oppressive. Alternately delightful and enlightening, he has produced a book which must have been an enormous labour to write but is a treat to read".[10]

The sequel, White Heat, covering the years 1964–70 and the rise and fall of Harold Wilson's Labour government, was published in August 2006. "Sandbrook's book could hardly be more impressive in its scope," wrote Leo McKinstry in The Times. "He writes with authority and an eye for telling detail.".[11] In November 2009, it was named by the Telegraph as "one of the books that defined the Noughties".[12]

Unlike some previous historians of the 1960s, Sandbrook argues that the period was marked by strong conservatism and conformity. His books attempt to debunk what he sees as myths associated with the period, from the sexual revolution to student protest, and he challenges the "cultural revolution" thesis associated with historians like Arthur Marwick. Charles Shaar Murray, writing in The Independent, called Sandbrook "the Hoodie Historian" and imagined him "slouching into shot while throwing whatever passes for gang signs in the history department of the University of Sheffield, and announcing to Arthur Marwick, Jonathon Green et al. that "You is all mi bitches nuh.""[13]

Sandbrook continued the history of post-war Britain with State of Emergency (2010), covering the period 1970–1974,[14] and Seasons in the Sun, which took the story up to the election of Margaret Thatcher as prime minister in 1979. He has said that a fifth volume, covering the period 1979–1984 and provisionally titled Who Dares Wins, may follow.[15]

Sandbrook has written articles and reviews for the Daily Mail, The Sunday Times, The Sunday Telegraph, The Observer and The Daily Telegraph and has appeared on BBC radio and television. His Radio Four series SlapDash Britain, charting the rise and fall of British governance since the Second World War, was described by the radio critic Miranda Sawyer as "very brilliant".[16]

Apparent plagiarism[edit]

In February 2011, Michael C. Moynihan identified several instances of apparent plagiarism in Sandbrook's book Mad as Hell.[17] Moynihan later expressed amazement that there were few repercussions for Sandbrook's career.[18] He suggested that Sandbrook was shielded from criticism by his social connections, saying: "There is an element of protection. Media buddies who go to the same dinner parties and all the rest of it."[19]

In an interview with Brendan O'Neill, Sandbrook rejected the allegations and said "the fact that Mad as Hell was later published in paperback without any changes 'tells its own story'." He maintained that he "footnoted his sources, and if popular history books sometimes sound familiar that is because there are only so many ways to say things."[19]

Television and radio[edit]

Year Title Broadcaster Notes
2009 Archive on 4: "The Anniversary Anniversary" Radio 4 An examination of people's obsessions with anniversaries[20]
2009 Archive on 4: "Pinter On Air" Radio 4 Discussing the role of television and radio dramas in establishing Harold Pinter's reputation[20]
2010 SlapDash Britain Radio 4 A 2-part series examining bureaucracy and incompetence in British government since the 1950s[21]
2010 Archive on 4: "A Working-class Tory Is Something To Be" Radio 4 With David Davis. An exploration of the history of British working-class Conservatives[20]
2011 Archive on 4: "Mind Your PMQs" Radio 4 The history and role of Prime Minister's Questions[20]
2011 The People's Post: A Narrative History of the Post Office Radio 4 A 15-part series examining the history of the Royal Mail[22]
2012 Archive on 4: "Tuning in" Radio 4 The history of British radio entertainment[20]
2012 The 70s BBC Two A 4-part history of Britain during the 1970s[23]
2013 Das Auto: The Germans, Their Cars and Us BBC Two The ascendence of the post-war automotive industry in Germany[24]
2013 Strange Days: Cold War Britain BBC Two A history of Britain during the Cold War[25]
2014 Learning to Listen Radio 4 The development of radio listening habits through the 1920s and 1930s[26]
2014 Tomorrow's Worlds: The Unearthly History of Science Fiction BBC Two A 4-part history of science fiction[27]
2014 Archive on 4: "The Eccentric Entrepreneur" Radio 4 The life of Captain Leonard Plugge[20]
2015 Let Us Entertain You BBC Two A 4-part history of British post-war culture[28]
2015 Archive on 4: "The Future Of The BBC: A History" Radio 4 A history of the BBC and how it may need to change to survive[20]
2016 The 80s with Dominic Sandbrook BBC Two A 3-part history of Britain during the 1980s[29]
2016 Future Tense - The Story of H.G. Wells BBC One Examines how H. G. Wells's lower-middle class upbringing in the suburban counties of South East England influenced his early science fiction writing.[30]

Bibliography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Seasons in the Sun". Penguin Books. 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  2. ^ "About me". dominicsandbrook.com. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  3. ^ Campelli, Matthew (5 November 2015). "Dominic Sandbrook entertains 800k". Broadcast. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  4. ^ "The Malvern Experience 11–31 July 2010". Malvern College. Archived from the original on 23 July 2011. Retrieved 1 December 2015 – via Wayback Machine. 
  5. ^ "The week ahead". Wellington College. 24 September 2010. Archived from the original on 24 September 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2015 – via Wayback Machine. 
  6. ^ "King's College London". dominicsandbrook.com. Archived from the original on 25 April 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2015 – via Wayback Machine. 
  7. ^ Stebenne, David (August 2005). "Famous for Fifteen Minutes". H-Net. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  8. ^ "Former Sen. McCarthy blasts biographer". The Hill. Washington, D.C. 18 February 2004. Archived from the original on 9 June 2004. Retrieved 1 December 2015 – via Wayback Machine. 
  9. ^ Howard, Anthony (1 May 2005). "The actor-manager's greatest production". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  10. ^ Cohen, Nick (1 May 2005). "The 60s? They began in '56". The Observer. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  11. ^ McKinstry, Leo (5 August 2006). "Which decade really swung?". The Times. London. 
  12. ^ MacArthur, Brian (13 November 2009). "100 books that defined the noughties". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  13. ^ Murray, Charles Shaar (11 August 2006). "Children of the revolution?". The Independent. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  14. ^ Montefiore, Simon Sebag (10 October 2010). "State of Emergency by Dominic Sandbrook: review". The Sunday Telegraph. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  15. ^ "New projects". dominicsandbrook.com. 2013. Archived from the original on 25 June 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2015 – via Wayback Machine. 
  16. ^ Sawyer, Miranda (20 June 2010). "Nicky Campbell; SlapDash Britain; Jeremy Vine". The Observer. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  17. ^ Moynihan, Michael C. (12 February 2011). "When the Tea Party Began". The Wall Street Journal. New York City. Retrieved 15 August 2013. 
  18. ^ Kamer, Foster (30 July 2012). "Q & A: Michael C. Moynihan, The Guy Who Uncovered Jonah Lehrer's Fabrication Problem". The New York Observer. New York City. Retrieved 15 August 2013. 
  19. ^ a b O'Neill, Brendan (8 August 2012). "The US journalist who exposed Jonah Lehrer wonders why his criticisms of Dominic Sandbrook were ignored". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  20. ^ a b c d e f g "Archive On 4". RadioListings. 3 November 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  21. ^ "SlapDash Britain". BBC. 2010. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  22. ^ "The People's Post: A Narrative History of the Post Office". Radio 4. 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  23. ^ "The 70s". BBC. 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  24. ^ "Das Auto: The Germans, Their Cars and Us". BBC. 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  25. ^ "Strange Days: Cold War Britain". BBC. 2015. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  26. ^ "Learning to Listen". BBC. 2014. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  27. ^ "Tomorrow's Worlds: The Unearthly History of Science Fiction". BBC. 2014. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  28. ^ "Dominic Sandbrook: Let Us Entertain You". BBC. 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  29. ^ "The 80s with Dominic Sandbrook". BBC. 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 
  30. ^ "Future Tense - The Story of H.G. Wells". BBC. 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2016. 

External links[edit]