This week we’re publishing Sixty Somethings by Nicola Madge and Paul Hoggart which is a fascinating collection of testimonies from a unique generation of women. I’m delighted to say it is ‘Pick of the Month’ in this month’s issue of The Lady. You can read the review here:
Sixty Somethings: The Lives of Women who remember the Sixties by Nicola Madge & Paul Hoggart, with illustrations by Geo Parkin, published in paperback by Quartet Books, on 3rd September 2020, priced at £12.
In the ‘Swinging Sixties’ change was in the air. This lively and entertaining account looks back over the lives of 67 middle-class sixty something women who lived through this tumultuous decade and explores what it was really like and what they are doing now.
From convent girl Julie Walters who gave up nursing to become an actress and bawdy comedienne and Maggie who set up a wholefood shop, to Lissa who worked in fashion in Carnaby Street and modelled part-time to Zena who acquired the Beatles’ autographs. Hippy Theresa wore loons, bell-bottom jeans, beads and Jesus sandals while Jenny went on the 1968 Grosvenor Square protest against the Vietnam war and lost a shoe.
Born shortly after the end of the Second World War, a time of optimism
and baby boom, all these women worked and managed their own finances
after they married and had children, unlike most of their mothers,
giving them more independence.
Most of the women didn’t like to think of themselves as “old” stressing that “this was not how they felt.” Today’s 65-year-olds are healthier, more mentally agile and more independent than in the past. Half the women interviewed said they were ‘fighting fit’, ‘independent’ most ‘homeowners’ and working part-time, with disposable income, a lively social life and numerous interests.
Even if, like me, you weren’t quite old enough to have lived through the sixties, this well-researched book takes you on an entertaining trip to a kaleidoscopic world of Beatlemania, fun fashions by Mary Quant, Ossie Clark and Twiggy, and catchy music – Sergeant Pepper, Rolling Stones and David Bowie to Vidal Sassoon haircuts, hippies, the pill, protests. Unputdownable, baby!
I’d give it 4 ½ stars
You can get your copy of Sixty Somethings by Nicola Madge and Paul
Hoggart here: https://www.quartetbooks.co.uk/shop/sixty-somethings/
Naim Attallah maintains that the versatility of Quartet is unique. Find out for yourselves by reading this amazing book.