The National Wealth: Who Gets What in Britain - Dominic HobsonHarperCollins, 1999, Paperback.
Condition: Very Good. Edges of the text block lightly soiled and tanned otherwise a very well presented copy.
First in this, paperback, edition. From the cover: “This is the most comprehensive, lucid and authoritative account of the state of the nation since Anthony Sampson’s classic Anatomy of Britain. Starting with a simple question — ‘who owns Britain?’ — Dominic Hobson has created a colossal tour de force: a book which not only ranges across every aspect of wealth and income in Britain today, but also explores the relationship between money, power and status from the Norman Conquest to New Labour. Huge in scope, masterly in presentation, The National Wealth reveals the social, economic and financial (rather than the political or bureaucratic) workings of Britain. It tells us who has the money, and how they get it; and, ultimately, who owns Britain today. The author describes the draining away of money and power from the great estates of the realm such as the Crown, the Aristocracy, the Church and Oxbridge; the aggrandisement of the State in the post-war socialist era, followed by the greatest transfer of ownership in Britain since the Dissolution of the Monasteries — the privatisation of the nationalised industries; the origins of the greatest personal fortunes and the psychology of the truly rich; the rise of the industrial Fat Cats and the new professional elites of the City and the Law. The book concludes with a probing analysis of the relationship between the PLC (the dominant form of social organisation in Britain today) and the great institutional investors who have become the most influential repositories of the national wealth. Throughout, the narrative concentrates on people as well as organisations: on people as voters, taxpayers, patients, students and parents as well as people at play and at work — MPs, civil servants, judges, dons, clergymen, farmers, lawyers, bankers, accountants, architects, doctors and dentists, teachers, army officers, managers, journalists, shopkeepers, publicans, sportsmen, charity-workers and pensioners. The National Wealth is a magnificent summation of Britain at the turn of the century, a panoramic and trenchantly expressed overview of the division of the spoils, and a searching examination of the gap between rhetoric and reality in public and private affairs.”