Michael Foot


Biography of Michael Foot

Michael Mackintosh Foot (23 July 1913 – 3 March 2010) was a British Labour Party politician and man of letters. He was a Member of Parliament (MP) from 1945 to 1955 and from 1960 until 1992. He was deputy leader of the Labour Party from 1976 to 1980, and later became the Leader of the Opposition from 1980 to 1983.

Associated with the Labour left for most of his career, Foot was a supporter of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and British withdrawal from the European Economic Community. His first Cabinet appointment was as Employment secretary under Harold Wilson in 1974, and later served as Leader of the House of Commons under James Callaghan. A passionate orator, he was Labour leader at the 1983 general election when the party obtained its lowest share of the vote since 1918.

Foot's parallel career as a journalist included appointments as editor of Tribune, on several occasions, and the Evening Standard newspaper. Among the books he authored are Guilty Men (an attack on Neville Chamberlain and others for the policy of appeasement), a biography of Jonathan Swift (The Pen and the Sword, 1957) and a biography of Aneurin Bevan.

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