I am delighted that The Welfare State We’re In is to be re-published next month. It has been out of print for several years – frustrating since I have known of one university, at least, which wanted to use it alongside its economics course.
I have written a new introduction assessing how things have gone since the book was written.
Getting to re-publication has been, as Tony Blair would say, a journey. The original computer files ready for printing were lost. The book had to be scanned, page by page and re-edited. Authorisation for photos had to be obtained all over again. I wanted the quality of the paper and the size of the format to be as good or better than the original and that costs money.
I am honoured that Biteback wanted to bring it back into print. Some people love the book and some hate it. It is now mentioned in new editions of a vast sociology textbook which sells in hundreds of thousands called, Sociology Themes and Perspectives by Michael Haralambos and Martin Holborn. The summary of the book there is quite fair. The commentary is simply an attack. Still, it is nice that it is considered influential enough to be worth attacking. I know I will never write anything better.