While it is central to today’s politics, few people fully understand the National Debt and its role in shaping the course of British history. Without it, Britain would not have gained – and lost – two empires, nor won its wars against France and Germany. But Britain has also been moulded by attempts to break free of the Debt, from postwar Keynesian economics to today’s austerity. Martin Slater writes a vivid tale, taking in some of the most dramatic incidents and personalities of Britain’s past – from clashes between King and Parliament, American independence and war in Europe, to the abolition of slavery, the development of the Union and the role of leading figures such as Pitt, Gladstone, Adam Smith and Keynes.
Martin will be in conversation with Ann Pettifor, author of The Production of Money.